Sudan threatens to “forever” shut oil pipeline with South Sudan

Omar Al-Bashir, Sudan President

The warning indicates the row between the two countries may never go away.

Barely a month after oil production and transportation resumed between South Sudan and the North, Sudanese president, Omar al-Bashir, has threatened to close the route “forever”, Reuters news agency reports.

“I now give our brothers in South Sudan a last, last warning that we will shut down the oil pipeline forever if they give any support to the traitors in Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile,” Mr. Bashir was quoted as saying on Monday, referring to insurgents operating in three Sudanese regions.

South Sudan resumed oil production in April after more than a year following disputes with its neighbour, Sudan. The decision came after both sides agreed to restart cross-border oil flows in March.

The recent warning now indicates the row between the two countries may never go away.

South Sudan owns a greater percentage of the oil wealth available to the former Sudan. But transportation of the crude for sales oversees were done through the North, which retained the name Sudan.

After both sides separated in 2011, disputes over revenues and border conflicts, led to a shutdown of production as South Sudan, a landlocked nation, could not convey the products, except through a third party, to the nearby coast.

Before shutdown, South Sudan produced 350,000 barrels a day. Production was halted over a disagreement about how much South Sudan should pay to export its oil through Sudanese pipelines. South Sudan said the charges amounted to theft.

The two countries came close to all-out war over border disputes last year, and have since agreed to set up a buffer zone along the border.


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