WASHINGTON The State Department said on Thursday it was "appalled" by an attack that killed four Nigerian peacekeepers and wounded eight others earlier this week in Sudan's western Darfur region.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the United States condemns the ambush on UNAMID personnel that occurred on October 2, and called for an investigation into the attack and for those responsible for the violence to be held accountable.
UNAMID, the world's largest peacekeeping mission, was deployed by the United Nations and the African Union in the arid western territory after insurgents took up arms in 2003. The conflict has led to thousands of deaths.
Violence in Darfur, where mostly non-Arab rebels are fighting against the government in Khartoum, has ebbed from a 2003-04 peak but international efforts to broker peace have failed to end the conflict.
Nuland also said the United States is "deeply concerned" by a "sharp deterioration in security" in North Darfur and adjacent parts of the Sudan, and called for an "immediate and unconditional end" to the unrest.
(Reporting By Margaret Chadbourn; Editing by Sandra Maler)