Heavy gunfire erupts overnight in South Sudan's capital amind political tensions
NAIROBI (AFP) - Heavy gunfire erupted overnight in South Sudan's capital Juba, diplomats said, amid mounting political tensions in the newly independent nation.
Diplomats and security sources said the fighting appeared to have broken out in a barracks close to the city centre shortly before midnight and involved the use of heavy machine guns and mortars.
Political tensions have been high in South Sudan in recent weeks, and earlier this month key leaders of the ruling party - the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) - made a public challenge to President Salva Kiir and accused him of "dictatorial" behaviour.
South Sudan's Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth refused to comment on the unrest, but signalled the President was still in charge.