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'Dozens dead' in South Sudan clashes

July 9, 2016 6:15 pm

Dozens of people have been killed in clashes in South Sudan’s capital Juba, military, medical and journalistic sources have said.

Gunfire broke out on Friday evening near the state house where President Salva Kiir was meeting his sometime rival, Vice-President Riek Machar.

Estimates of the death toll vary, but most accounts put the number over 100 – some as high as 150.

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A 2015 peace deal to end a 20-month civil war has failed to quell unrest.

Juba is in lockdown as South Sudan, the world’s newest country, marks the fifth anniversary of independence from neighbouring Sudan.

Friday’s fighting was apparently sparked by a shootout between Mr Kiir’s and Mr Machar’s bodyguards . The two men met at the presidential palace on Friday.

The half-hour gun battle then escalated, with heavy weapons and artillery being used in several parts of the city.

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