Sudan: June 18, 2001


On June 17 the Middle East Newsline (MENL) reports that Sudan has built three weapons factories near Khartoum. The factories were built with the help of mainland China. MENL also cited a Canadian report that Sudanese helicopter gunships were operating from oil company facilities in south Sudan. Also on June 17, SPLA leader John Garang said in an interview that foreign oil firms in Sudan are legitimate targets" for SPLA attack. He said the SPLA could (and one day would) seize an oil field. "We will take control of all the oil fields, Garang was quoted as saying. I cannot tell you exactly when. But we are going to expel them (government troops). I have no doubt about it." On June 18, a spokesman for Canadas Talisman Energy, a major oil exploration company operating in Sudan, said that Talisman would not be threatened by Garang. Talisman owns 25 percent of Sudans Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Company. (The rest is held by Chinese, Malaysian and Sudanese partnerships.)


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