US urges Sudan to normalize relations with Israel
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok on August 25, 2020 in Kharthoum. Handout / Office of Sudan's Prime Minister / AFP
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After having obtained, in mid-August, a historic agreement to normalize relations between Israel and the Emirates, the US Secretary of State is on an international tour. Mike Pompeo is now traveling to Bahrain and the Emirates after a visit to Israel and yesterday, August 25, to Sudan. It was the first time that a foreign minister had visited Khartoum in fifteen years. Washington is pushing for the Sudanese to come closer to Israel as well, but the government is refusing for now.
With our correspondent in Nairobi, Sébastien Németh
Mike Pompeo wants Sudan in turn to normalize relations with Israel. But despite the historic side of his visit to Khartoum, the Sudanese head of government has put an end to it.
Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok explained that his cabinet did not have a mandate to decide the issue. This is precisely what the Forces for Freedom and Change (FLC), the powerful coalition of parties and civil society, said on Sunday 23 August.
Removal from the list of countries supporting terrorism
The Prime Minister followed this line, probably anxious not to alienate the FLC, while the country has known for weeks a strong social unrest against the backdrop of economic slump.
The head of government also asked the Americans to "dissociate" relations with Israel and the exit of Sudan from the list of countries supporting terrorism. Indeed, many believe that the Americans are trying a maneuver: if Khartoum gets closer to the Hebrew state , it will be removed from the list, which will greatly relieve its economy.
But according to Cameron Hudson of the Atlantic Council, Washington expects more, perhaps with electoral ulterior motives. According to the researcher, the rehabilitation of Sudan could be " linked to a broader peace plan in the Middle East, with a rapprochement between Israel and as many Arab countries as possible ".
According to Cameron Hudson, this would allow President Donald Trump to garner " diplomatic success in the region, a month before the American election ".
► Read also: Arab countries divided over the agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates
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