Foreign Minister: Attempted coup in South Sudan

Posted: 12/16/13 at 7:25 am EST

By TOM ODULA

Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- A South Sudanese official says a group of disgruntled soldiers and politicians led by a former vice president have attempted to overthrow the government.

South Sudanese Foreign Minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin said Monday some troops within the main army base raided the weapons store and were repulsed. Benjamin says casualties from fighting Monday morning are still unknown.

He says some politicians have been arrested but could not confirm if former Vice President Riek Machar, who he said led the attempt, was among them.

The president has ordered a dawn to dusk curfew. Tension has been mounting in the world's youngest nation since South Sudan President Salva Kiir fired Machar as his deputy in July. Machar has expressed a willingness to contest the presidency in 2015.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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