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Northern Sudan State’s Vote Called ‘Credible’ by Carter Center

May 19 (Bloomberg) -- Voting in the northern Sudanese state of Southern Kordofan was “generally peaceful and credible,” though there were some “irregularities” and “heightened insecurity,” said the Atlanta-based Carter Center.

“In spite of the procedural lapses, the Carter Center did not observe systemic irregularities that would invalidate the results,” the organization, founded by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, said in an e-mailed statement received today. The center monitored the May 2-4 vote.

Voters retained incumbent state Governor Ahmen Haroun, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court in connection with war crimes in Darfur, a region in the west of northern Sudan.

Southern Kordofan was the scene of heavy fighting during the two-decade civil war between the northern and southern regions that ended with a peace agreement in 2005. The state, which is northern Sudan’s only oil-producing region, is located on the border with the south.

The northern branch of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, Southern Sudan’s ruling party, said it won’t recognize the results of the election because of alleged vote-rigging. The party led the rebellion against the Sudanese government in Khartoum.

To contact the reporter on this story: Maram Mazen in Khartoum at mmazen@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net.

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