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Korea to send peacekeeping troops to South Sudan

South Korea’s National Assembly on Thursday authorized sending about 300 military personnel to South Sudan on a peacekeeping mission that will last until the end of 2013, officials said.

Since last year, South Korea has taken steps to join the U.N. Mission in South Sudan, the U.N. peacekeeping mission in the newly independent African nation.

The Korean peacekeeping unit, consisting mostly of engineers and some medics, will be dispatched to South Sudan at the end of this year or early next year, the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The unit will be stationed in the town of Bor, some 170 kilometers north of the capital Juba, it said.

South Sudan declared its independence in July 2011 from the Arab-dominated North after decades of civil war that claimed 2 million lives. Still, tensions between the two Sudans remain over border security and oil production. (Yonhap News)