Obama deploys small military group to South Sudan



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WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama has deployed a small military contingent to South Sudan to help bolster security at the U.S. Embassy amid escalating violence.

In a letter to Congress, Obama says 45 military personnel were sent to South Sudan on Wednesday. He says they are equipped for combat but their purpose is to protect U.S. citizens and property.

The president says the Americans will stay in South Sudan until the security situation improves.

Violence broke out in South Sudan, the world's newest country, late Sunday when the presidential guard splintered along ethnic lines. Violence in the capital of Juba spiraled from there, and then extended out into the country.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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