Johannesburg - President Salva Kiir has taken a swipe at the
African Union over its failure to step in to resolve South Sudan's standoff
with Sudan, media reports said on Tuesday.
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir threatened on the weekend
to cut the flow via Sudanese pipelines of South Sudanese crude oil over its
alleged support for rebels.
"This latest turn of events brings into question the
credibility of the African Union mediators but we remain optimistic that they
will intervene accordingly," Kiir was quoted as saying by the Sudan
"We urge both regional and international governments to
diplomatically engage with Sudan in order to protect the lives of the citizens
of both nations and to encourage Sudan to engage in peaceful dialogue with
their internal rebellion."
South Sudanese officials say they have yet to receive formal
notification of a plan to halt the flow of oil destined for international
The standoff is seen as a setback for the two countries,
which reached the brink of war after a dispute over oil transit fees a little
over a year ago.
In March, Khartoum and Juba agreed in talks under the
mediation of the African Union to the resumption of southern crude oil
production and exports via northern pipelines.
The two sides failed to agree on several key issues,
including border demarcation and how to share oil revenue.
When South Sudan split from Sudan to become an independent
state in July 2011, it took about two-thirds of its oil reserves. However, Juba
is entirely reliant on Sudan's pipelines, as it has no alternative means to
bring the oil to ports.