A Southern Sudanese soldiers stands at attention during the national anthem during an independence rehearsal procession in Juba, southern Sudan on Thursday, July 7, 2011. The Government of Southern Sudan is making lavish preparations to celebrate its declaration of independence from the north on Saturday, July 9th. The south's secession comes after decades of brutal civil war between north and south that resulted in more than two million deaths, most of which were southerners. (AP Photo/Pete Muller)
JUBA, South Sudan (AP) -- South Sudan's government spokesman says a clash between Sudan and South Sudan troops killed 22 soldiers as combat spread into a new area along the nations' tense border.
Barnaba Marial Benjamin said Wednesday that the fighting took place near the town of Meiram, along the border with Sudan's South Kordofan state and South Sudan's Northern Bahr el Ghazal state.
Benjamin said the clash started when a Sudan soldier shot a South Sudan soldier who was getting water from the river that divides the two sides. Benjamin said seven South Sudan soldiers and 15 Sudan soldiers were killed.
South Sudan and Sudan are already fighting heavy battles in another area along the border.