Russia angered over UN helicopter
Saturday, 22 December 2012 13:08

Russia has urged South Sudan to identify and punish those responsible for shooting down a UN helicopter and killing its four Russian crew.

The helicopter was apparently shot down on Friday while on a reconnaissance mission in eastern Jonglei state.

The UN strongly condemned the "shooting down... of a clearly marked UN helicopter" by South Sudanese forces.

South Sudanese officials have given conflicting accounts of why the helicopter may have been downed.

"We call on the government of South Sudan to carry out the necessary investigation, punish the guilty and take every measure to guarantee that this never happens again," Russia's foreign ministry said in a statement.

The ministry also named the four male crew members who died.

South Sudan's minister of information told the BBC on Friday that the cause of the incident was not clear.

Other officials were quoted as saying the helicopter had been mistaken for a rebel aircraft, or that it had been downed by rebels.

Initial reports said the helicopter had crashed.

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