The formal removal of Sudan from the United States (U.S.) State Sponsors of Terrorism list heralds a crucial change in bilateral ties between the two nations, according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement on Monday.
Earlier in the day, the U.S. Embassy in Khartoum announced that Pompeo had signed a notification to formally take Sudan off its list of terror sponsors and that the decision entered into force starting Dec. 14.
“Today, Sudan’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism is officially rescinded.
“This represents a fundamental change in our bilateral relationship toward greater collaboration and support for Sudan’s historic democratic transition,” Pompeo said.
Pompeo emphasised that the removal was achieved thanks to the efforts of Sudan’s civilian-led transitional government to adopt a completely new course.
“We commend the calls of the Sudanese people for freedom, peace, and justice, and we congratulate the members of the civilian-led transitional government for their courage in advancing the aspirations of the citizens they serve,” Pompeo added.
Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said on Monday that the exclusion of his country from the U.S.’ State Sponsors of Terrorism list (SSTL) would unlock numerous opportunities for future development, as Khartoum had officially “rejoined” the global community.
The prime minister noted that the removal from the blacklist would help Sudan release from the international and global blockade.
The African nation was blacklisted back in 1993 for sheltering Osama bin Laden for nearly five years at a time when the al-Qaeda terrorist group (banned in Russia) leader was involved in attacks on targets in the U.S.
Four years later, Washington imposed sanctions against Khartoum that limited the ability of Sudanese banks to work with foreign partners.
A breakthrough in relations between the U.S. and Sudan was achieved in August 2019, when new Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok announced the start of negotiations with Washington on removing Khartoum from the blacklist.
The improvement of ties occurred after Sudan established the Sovereign Council, officially dissolving the Transitional Military Council, which came to power after former President Omar Bashir was overthrown in April.
In late October, Sudan and Israel reached an agreement to establish full diplomatic relations between the two nations.
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