Abyei crisis: UN confirms Sudan troop pullout
Sudan has pulled its troops out of the disputed border region of Abyei, according to the UN.
The UN peacekeeping mission in Abyei confirmed the withdrawal took place late on Tuesday evening.
The pullout comes as negotiators from Sudan and South Sudan meet in Ethiopia to begin talks over several disputes.
Abyei is claimed by both Sudan and the South, which became independent in 2011 after a long civil war. Sudan’s forces seized Abyei last May.
But a source has told the BBC that the number of police in the area has been increased to about 200, raising fears that some Sudanese soldiers may have simply changed into police uniforms in order to stay.
Either way, the BBC’s James Copnall in Khartoum says the presence of Sudanese police is likely to worry the tens of thousands of displaced people who are now considering moving back to Abyei.
Its status was left undecided in the 2005 peace deal between the two sides, and a referendum on the issue has been postponed indefinitely.
Sudanese officials had said the pullout was designed to aid the progress of the peace talks.
Pictured: The Abyei region has been a flashpoint area in the months since South Sudan’s independence