23 December 2012

Sudan's Spy Chief in Qatar With a Message From Bashir

Khartoum — The Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir today sent a written letter to Qatar's Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, according to state media.

The message was delivered by the director of Sudan's National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) Mohamed Atta Al-Mawla Abbas who met with the Qatari leader at his office in Doha.

The contents of the letter were not revealed except to say that it pertained to bilateral ties and ways of developing and enhancing them.

Abbas also briefed the Qatari Emir on the situation in Sudan and efforts exerted by Khartoum in different areas to achieve stability, security and development.

Al-Thani on his end reaffirmed his country's support to Sudan and personal attention he gives to developments occurring in the East African nation expressing Qatar's continuous willingness to back Khartoum's efforts.

Video footage from Qatar's state TV showed Sudan's spy chief being accompanied by two unidentified officials which did not include the Sudanese ambassador in Doha.

In the past messages from Bashir to the Qatari Emir were typically conveyed by Bashir's advisers, foreign minister or parliamentary speaker. Dispatching the NISS chief may indicate the sensitive nature of the letter.

Qatar has been one of the few countries where Sudan enjoys relatively warm relations with. For years the rich Arab Gulf state has hosted peace talks between the Sudanese government and Darfur rebel groups which eventually resulted in signing of a peace accord in 2011.

Furthermore, Qatar also pledged $2 billion in the form of investments and purchases of government bonds to help its beleaguered economy reeling from the impact of losing the oil-rich south last year.

It was also revealed that Bashir underwent a throat surgery in Doha last August for later turned out to be a benign tumor according to the president's brother.

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