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Sudan's president in Kuwait, FA minister to lobby in USA

October 23 - 2017 KHARTOUM
President Omar Al Bashir and the Emir of Kuweit, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Jabir Al Sabah during a former visit (file photo)
President Omar Al Bashir and the Emir of Kuweit, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Jabir Al Sabah during a former visit (file photo)

President Omar Al Bashir travelled to the Arab Gulf over the weekend for talks about the reconstruction of Sudan and peace in the country. Khartoum will continue its talks with Washington concerning Sudan’s removal from the terrorism sponsors list.

On Sunday, Al Bashir spoke with the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Jabir Al Sabah, on the prospects of bilateral relations, efforts to reach a long lasting peace in Sudan and rebuild the country.

The Sudanese president is to visit Qatar as well, where he will discuss the same issues with the country’s emir, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, a government spokesman reported on Sunday.

Khartoum has taken a neutral stance towards the current crisis in the Gulf. More than once, it has declared its keenness to broker reconciliation by supporting an initiative launched by the Emir of Kuwait after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrein accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and decided on sanctions against the country.

State sponsor

Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ibrahim Ghandour said at a symposium in Khartoum on Saturday, that the second phase of the dialogue with the American government will commence next month.

“The agenda of the talks with the USA is focused on removing Sudan from the list of state sponsors of terrorism,” he said.

The Minister denied that the recent US sanctions relief was the result of a deal to keep Islamists out of power in Sudan. He stressed that the Americans never requested them to remove certain persons from the government.

On 13 October, the administration of President Donald Trump announced its decision to lift two-decades-old economic sanctions against Khartoum.

The US decision did not include the removal of Sudan from the list of states sponsoring terrorism -to which it was added in 1993- which means that restrictions on debt relief, receiving foreign aid, or the sale of arms are still in place.

In response, Minister Ghandour, said that Khartoum agreed with Washington to start “the following dialogue stage early next year. “There are files still pending, including keeping Sudan on the list of state sponsors of terrorism, the external debts problem, and Sudan's accession to the World Trade Organisation.”

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