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People's Daily Online>>Foreign Affairs

Abducted workers not freed: embassy

By Hu Yinan (China Daily)

08:01, January 31, 2012

BEIJING - None of the 29 Chinese workers abducted by rebels in the South Kordofan region of Sudan have been released, an embassy official said in Sudan on Monday despite Sudanese reports that 14 had been freed.

Details are slowly emerging of events that led to the abductions.

A group of 47 Chinese workers became separated on Saturday when their camp was attacked during a clash between the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Army-North and the Sudanese military.

The rebels said that they decided to hold - not abduct - the 29 workers. These workers, the rebels said, are "in good hands".

The Sudanese army found 17 workers, from the original group of 47, and transferred them to safety, an embassy official told Xinhua News Agency. One Chinese worker remains missing.

"When the rebels attacked the company camp near Al-Abbasiya town in South Kordofan, there were 47 Chinese workers. Twenty-nine of them were abducted and 18 fled to neighboring areas," the official said.

"Search efforts are under way for the missing worker," he added.

Armed clashes in the oil-producing state, just north of newly independent South Sudan, have occurred frequently in recent months.

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