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South Kordofan - 31 Jan 2012

China calls for safe release of workers

The Chinese Foreign Ministry said China has sent a team of officials to Sudan to ensure the release of 29 workers detained by Sudanese rebels on Saturday in South Kordofan state.

The spokesman said 'the Chinese side calls on all parties to exercise calm'.

In a statement the Ministry asked for the release of detainees as soon as possible.

On Sunday Ahmed Haroun, the governor of South Kordofan said the Sudanese Armed Forces managed to 'free 14 of the detained workers from the grip of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement'.

The spokesman for the SPLM, Arnu Ngutulu Lodi however said the 29 workers remain with the movement in a good situation.

He said the SPLM will release them when the security situation in the area allows them to do so.