Following helicopter crash three Ethiopian peacekeeping soldiers in Abyei Sudan died on Saturday, UN official said.
Addressing the Africa leaders in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia this morning, the Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. António Guterres indicated that the three peacekeeping soldiers from Ethiopia have died in helicopter crash within UN compound. The soldiers were serving under the United Nations peacekeeping force in the war torn but oil rich region.
Currently Ethiopia has 4,365 soldiers deployed by the UN in Abyei region of Sudan, according to the UN. It was in June 2011 that the UN responded to “the urgent situation in Sudan’s Abyei region’ by establishing the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA).
UNISFA’s establishment came after the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) reached an agreement in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to demilitarize Abyei and let Ethiopian troops to monitor the area.
The operation has been tasked with monitoring the flashpoint border between north and south and facilitating the delivery of humanitarian aid, and is authorized to use force in protecting civilians and humanitarian workers in Abyei.