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Ethiopian peacekeepers to leave Sudan’s Abyei area

The UN has reportedly agreed to a request by the Sudanese government for Ethiopian forces to leave the Abyei region as tensions between the two countries escalate over the Nile dam and a disputed border region.

“It was agreed to withdraw the Ethiopian component from the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) during the next three months at the request of Sudan,” a Sudan Foreign Ministry statement read.

In April, Sudan demanded the replacement of the Ethiopian peacekeepers after it accused Addis Ababa of amassing troops in the eastern Al-Fashaga region, an area disputed by both sides.

The UN authorised the deployment of UNISFA to the disputed Abyei region between Sudan and South Sudan days before the independence of South Sudan in 2011.

The two countries are also involved in a dispute over the hydroelectric Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (Gerd) built on River Nile. Sudan relies on water from the river.

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