Sudan and Israel have agreed to normalise relations, US President Donald Trump announced on Friday at the White House, a move that was denounced by Palestinians as a “new stab within the back”.Trump, who is seeking re-election on November 3, sealed the agreement during a call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and Transitional Council Head Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, senior US officials said.
“The leaders agreed to the normalisation of relations between Sudan and Israel and to finish the state of belligerence between their nations,” a joint statement issued by the three countries read.Trump added that he expects the Palestinians and other nations, including Saudi Arabia , to also comply with closer ties with Israel within the coming months.“This are going to be the third country where we’re doing this – and that we have many, more coming,” Trump said.
Khartoum is now the third Arab government to normalise relations with Israel within the last two months, after the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.The UAE welcomed the Israel-Sudan deal, saying it's “an important step to spice up security and prosperity within the region”.Sudan’s acting secretary of state said on Friday, however, the agreement for normalising ties with Israel will depend upon approval from its yet-to-be formed legislature .
“Agreement on normalisation with Israel are going to be decided after completion of the constitutional institutions through the formation of the legislature ,” Omar Gamareldin said on state TV.Sudan’s yet-to-be-formed council still must be established under a power-sharing deal between the military officers and civilians, who are running Sudan jointly since the overthrow of Omar al-Bashir in 2019. it's unclear when the assembly are going to be formed.
For the Palestinians“new stab within the back”
Speaking in Ramallah within the occupied West Bank , Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) official Wasel Abu Youssef said Sudan’s decision to normalise relations with Israel was a “new stab within the back” for the Palestinians.“Sudan’s joining others who normalised ties with the state of the Israeli occupation represents a replacement stab within the back of the Palestinian people and a betrayal of the just Palestinian cause,” Abu Youssef said.He said the African state’s decision to follow the UAE and Bahrain “will not shake the Palestinians’ faith in their cause and in continuing their struggle”.
In the besieged Gaza Strip , Fawzi Barhoum, a spokesman for the Palestinian group, Hamas, a standard ally of Sudan, told the Reuters press agency the choice was a step within the “wrong direction”.The Trump administration has sought to advance deals between Israel and Arab nations as a part of its push to succeed in a so-called “Deal of the Century” to finish the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – and prop up support among the US president’s Evangelical Christian base before the upcoming elections.
Speaking ahead of reporters within the Oval Office , Trump asked Netanyahu – who was on speakerphone – if he believed Joe Biden, his Democratic presidential opponent whom he called “Sleepy Joe”, could have helped broker such a deal.Netanyahu answered: “One thing I can tell you is we appreciate the assistance for peace from anyone in America, and that we appreciate what you’ve done enormously.”Netanyahu welcomed what he called a rapidly expanding “circle of peace” and therefore the start of a “new era”.Trump’s decision earlier in the week to get rid of Sudan from the US list of State Sponsors of Terrorism paved the way for the affect Israel, marking a far off policy achievement for the Republican president as he seeks a second term trailing behind Biden in opinion polls.
Trump announced on Monday he would take Sudan, which the US designated as a state sponsor of terrorism in 1993, off the list once it had deposited $335m it had pledged to pay in compensation.Khartoum has since placed the funds during a special escrow account for victims of al-Qaeda attacks on US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.Shortly before the Israel-Sudan deal was announced, Trump notified Congress of “his intent to formally rescind Sudan’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism”.
The White House called the move a “pivotal turning point” for Khartoum, which is seeking to emerge from decades of isolation.Speaking at the White House on Friday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said it's “completely appropriate” for the US to lift the designation, given recent strides Sudan has made to transition to a civilian-led government.According to the joint statement, Israel and Sudan decide to first open up economic and trade relations, with an initial specialise in agriculture.
A senior US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said issues like the formal establishment of diplomatic ties would be resolved later.Pompeo added he expects to ascertain more trade between the US and Sudan, as well.Al Jazeera’s Alan Fisher, reporting from Washington, DC, said while removing Sudan from the list isn't high on the list of priorities for many US voters, Trump sees the normalisation agreement as a political win.
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