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El Burhan: Sudan to continue cooperation with Russia

October 25 - 2019 SOCHI
The participants of the first Russia-Africa Summit, Sochi, October 23, 2019 (Kremlin)
The participants of the first Russia-Africa Summit, Sochi, October 23, 2019 (Kremlin)

Sudan is looking forward to continue cooperating with Russia economically and militarily, the Chairman of Sudan’s Sovereign Council, Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, said on Wednesday.

El Burhan, accompanied by the Sudanese Minister of Foreign Affairs and a number of senior officials, travelled to Sochi in Russia earlier this week to attend the Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum on October 23-24.

In a press statement after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, El Burhan said that Moscow and Khartoum share interests in economic and investment cooperation.

He also affirmed Sudan's aspiration to implement all military defence agreements signed between the two countries. The deals include part of the reform of the Sudanese military establishment and enhancement of the capabilities of the Sudan Armed Forces.

President Putin promised El Burhan that his country will provide all necessary assistance and support to normalise the situation in Sudan.

Influence

On June 4, Russia joined China in blocking a UN Security Council draft resolution that condemned the then ruling Transitional Military Council’s (TMC) killings of peaceful protestors in Sudan.

Russia’s defence of the Sudanese junta illustrates the growing importance of its alignment with Khartoum for its economic interests and geopolitical aspirations in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace stated in a report on July 11.

Analysing the Russian-Sudanese relations after the ousting of President Omar Al Bashir in April this year, the report states that “the TMC agreed to uphold Russia’s substantial contracts in Sudan’s defence, mining and energy sectors, which have expanded significantly in recent years”.

Russia’s ability to influence conditions in Sudan depends on the support of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for the country’s military rulers and the “opposition’s continued inability to coalesce around a single leader or dominant faction.

“If these conditions remain in place, Russia will be well-positioned to remain an influential stakeholder in Sudan for the foreseeable future,” the report concludes.


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