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Sudan court sentences 18 rebel leaders to death

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March 14, 2014 09:15 AM EST | AP


KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — A court in Sudan has sentenced 18 rebel leaders to death for murder, including the head of a delegation in talks with the Sudanese government.

State radio reported Friday that a court sentenced former governor of the southern Blue Nile State and leader of the opposition group Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North Malik Agar and 17 other members of the group to death by hanging. Forty-seven others were given life sentences in a hearing Thursday. All but one were tried in absentia.

Sudan resumed talks with rebels last month. The rebel coalition was part of the South Sudanese rebel army, the Sudan People's Liberation Army, until South Sudan seceded from the north in 2011. Since then, the coalition has been banned in Sudan, but wages an active insurgency in its south.