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Two alleged arms dealers killed in Sudan

April 6, 2011 at 7:41 AM   |   Comments

KHARTOUM, Sudan, April 6 (UPI) -- A vehicle allegedly packed with arms was hit near Port Sudan, killing its two occupants, Sudanese officials said.

It was unclear whether the car was bombed by an unidentified plane or hit by a missile fired from a ship at sea, with one Sudanese official blaming Israel for the incident.

The Sudanese Media Center late Tuesday said an unidentified aircraft bombed a civilian vehicle in the Klanaib area outside of Port Sudan on the road leading to the airport.

The two people in the car were killed instantly, said SMC, an agency believed affiliated with the country's security apparatus.

"The air defense responded to the plane with intensive fire forcing it to escape from the Sudanese airspace. The air defense could not identify the plane, but affirmed that it was a foreign plane," the report said.

SMC gave a different version of events early Wednesday, quoting Salah Sir al-Khitim Kena, the deputy governor of the Red Sea, as saying the car was hit by a missile apparently fired offshore, Sudantribune.com reported.

Mohammed Tahir Hussein, the deputy chairman of the ruling National Congress Party, suggested the plane was Israeli and sent to track down arms smugglers, Sudantribune.com said.

Hussein said witnesses told him the plane came from the direction of the Red Sea, hit the car and turned back, the Web site said.

In 2009, a convoy of trucks was targeted from the air, killing 119 near the border with Egypt. At the time, foreign reports suggested Israel was behind the attack targeting a shipment of weapons that were to have been smuggled into Gaza, Sudan.net said. Israel never confirmed or denied the report.

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