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After South Sudan became independent, these two divisions were supposed to return to the south, but they stayed in what they saw as their own jurisdiction.

“Military and logistical cooperation and collaboration between the two forces continues,” said the Small Arms Survey, an independent research project located at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, in an April report, debunking claims that the two forces had separated.

“Both Khartoum and Juba [South Sudan’s capital] have raised the stakes by supporting allies to destabilize the other,” the report said. “In most cases, mutual accusations of military and logistical support are legitimate, while the ongoing denials have little credibility.”

Jonah Leff, project coordinator for the Small Arms Survey’s Sudan/South Sudan Project, said: “We gathered pretty credible testimonies.”

The rebels in South Kordofan seized most of their weapons from the Sudanese military, but there probably is a steady flow of ammunition coming from South Sudan, he added.

Anwar Elhaj, a Washington-based spokesman for the SPLM-N, denied his group receives financial or material support from South Sudan.

He describes the relationship his group has with South Sudan as historical.

“We still share the same vision, but financially and militarily we are separate entities,” he said. “But this is an internal issue that has to do with Sudan, not South Sudan.”

The southern rebels have joined forces with groups in Sudan’s western state of Darfur. Their goal is to overthrow the government of Gen. Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur.

Sudan, too, is supporting rebels fighting in South Sudan.

The Small Arms Survey report found that Sudan is the primary source of arms for those rebels.

A review of weapons used by rebels in South Sudan showed that a large number of arms, mostly Chinese-made, had been provided by Sudan, Mr. Leff said.

“[The rebels] are all in Khartoum,” said Mr. Benjamin, the South Sudanese official. “Everybody knows they are still supporting them.”