Ahmed Elbatrawy

Sudan: Rebels kidnap 70 workers, including Chinese nationals

Khartoum, Sudan (CNN) — Militants captured 70 construction workers, including Chinese nationals, in Sudan’s volatile South Kordofan state, military officials said Sunday.

The group attacked the construction site in a remote area Saturday and destroyed equipment, said Alsawarmi Khalid, spokesman for the Sudanese armed forces.

Khalid blamed the attacks on the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement -North, a rebel force in the border region with neighboring South Sudan.

The Sudanese army is pursuing the kidnappers, the spokesman said.

South Sudan became the world’s newest nation last year after decades of conflict with the north.

International concern has grown over the violence in South Kordofan and nearby Blue Nile states, which has forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.

The region is a Sudan territory, but straddles Sudan and South Sudan’s ethnic and political lines.

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Ahmed Elbatrawy