October 21, 2007 in Nation/World

World in brief: Fighting erupts in refugee camp

The Spokesman-Review
 

Fighting at a refugee camp in southern Darfur has left several people dead and others missing, an African Union official said Saturday.

The clashes in the Kalama refugee camp broke out over differences among tribal groups that signed a peace agreement with the Sudanese government in 2006 and those who did not sign, according to Al Sahafa, an independent daily newspaper reporting from Darfur.

AU spokesman Noureddine Mezni said “a number of parties were implicated” in the fighting Thursday. He would not elaborate or provide an exact death toll, citing an ongoing investigation.

The violence comes ahead of talks in Libya later this month between the government and Darfur rebel factions, meant to end four years of fighting that has left more than 200,000 people dead and displaced 2.5 million in the vast western Sudan region.

SAN FRANCISCO IXHUATAN, Mexico

Migrants’ bodies pulled from ocean

Authorities have recovered the bodies of 15 Central American migrants whose boat capsized in the Pacific Ocean, the Mexican navy said Saturday. The vessel was believed to be carrying more than 20 migrants.

Survivor Noemi Martinez, 29, of El Salvador, said the boat departed from Guatemala and capsized Tuesday with more than 20 people aboard, according to Moises Hernandez, regional commander for ministerial police in Oaxaca.

State authorities identified the only other known survivor as Salvadoran Walter Alan, 23.

Search efforts were suspended on Saturday because of heavy rain that flooded rivers and creeks. Earlier, a military helicopter searched the sea while state authorities combed the beach near the towns of San Francisco Ixhuatan and San Francisco del Mar, about 200 miles from the Guatemalan border.

KINSHASA, Congo

Residents flee amid new rebel fighting

Clashes broke out Saturday between rebels and a pro- government militia in eastern Congo, forcing people to flee their homes, a U.N. official said.

The fighting in two villages in North Kivu province pitted rebels loyal to former army general Laurent Nkunda against Mai Mai militiamen, said Maj. Prem Kumar Tiwari, a spokesman for the U.N. peacekeeping force in Congo.

Tiwari did not know how many people had fled the fighting, which took place about 60 miles north of the regional capital, Goma.

Thousands have fled their homes in the region in the past week because of renewed outbreaks of violence, according to the chief U.N. peacekeeping spokesman, Kemal Saiki.

Saturday’s clashes came two days after President Joseph Kabila said during a visit to Goma that the army had the “green light” to begin forcibly disarming Nkunda’s fighters if they ignore calls to integrate into the national army.

The army said Thursday it had killed more than 100 rebels in five days of fighting. Nkunda then called for a cease-fire to avoid civilian casualties.

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