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Sudan military leaders killed in crash

KHARTOUM, Sudan, April 4 -- Sudan's deputy defense minister and more than 14 other members of the country's military leadership were killed Wednesday in a plane crash in southern Sudan.

Col. Ibrahim Shamseddine was among those on the plane when it crashed during an inspection trip near Malkal about 350 miles south of Khartoum.

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The British Broadcasting Corp said that in addition to Shamseddine the list of victims included three brigadier generals, nine lieutenant generals and another colonel.

A statement by the Sudanese Armed Forces general command said 15 top military men were killed in the crash and released their names and ranks. Among the dead were Lt. Gen. Amir Kassem, deputy chief-of-staff for the Supplies Committee; Brig. Gen. Yassin Arabi, deputy director of the military intelligence unit; and Brig. Gen. Omar al-Amin Karar, commander of the popular defense forces.

Shamseddine held prominent military posts since President Omar Hassan al-Bashir came to power following a coup in 1989. He was a prominent command member of the National Salvation Revolution Command Council until it was dissolved in 1993 and then was named presidential adviser and deputy defense minister.

Officials said the officers were to inspect army units protecting the oil-rich Adareel area. There was no report as to the cause of the crash.NEWLN:

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