Sudan summons Libya envoy for alleged Darfur rebel support

A picture released by the UNAMID shows a member of the rebel movement Sudan Liberation Army-Abdul Wahid posted in Forog, Sudan, May 30, 2012 (AFP Photo/Albert Gonzalez Farran)

Khartoum (AFP) - Sudan summoned the military attache Tuesday over accusations Libya's internationally recognised government has sheltered Darfuri rebels on its territory, an army spokesman said.

The Sudanese "armed forces summoned the Libyan military attache for the Tobruk government's sheltering insurgents" from the Darfur-based Sudan Liberation Army led by Minni Minnawi, Colonel al-Sawarmy Khaled Saad said.

The envoy was summoned "in protest at and complete rejection of this behaviour by the Tobruk government, which represents an intervention in internal Sudanese matters," Saad said in a statement.

Since 2003, Minnawi has been battling Khartoum's forces in the western Sudanese region of Darfur, which borders Libya to its northwest.

Saad said Minnawi's forces were being trained inside Libya to fight alongside the troops of General Khalifa Haftar, the anti-Islamist general named in April as the army chief for the Tobruk-based government.

Plunged into chaos after the 2011 overthrow of dictator Moamer Kadhafi, Libya has two parliaments and governments vying for power.

Saad called the alleged presence of the rebels inside Libya a "threat" to security in Darfur and the border region between Libya and Sudan.

The SLA-Minnawi denies its forces were in Libya.

"This is not true. We have no presence in Libya and we are in Darfur and the government knows that," said spokesman Abdullah Mursal.

Minnawi was among several mostly black, African insurgent groups who mounted a campaign against President Omar al-Bashir's Arab-dominated government 12 years ago, complaining of marginalisation.

The conflict has killed 300,000 people, the United Nations says.