22 October 2017

Sudan 'Disappointed' At Renewed U.S. Travel Warning

Khartoum — The Sudanese government has reacted 'with regret' to the announcement on Thursday by the US State Department in Washington of a renewed travel warning advising US citizens of the dangers of travelling to Sudan.

In a press statement on Friday in reaction to Radio Dabanga's report of the renewed warning on Thursday night, Sudanese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Gharib Allah Khidir called on the USA "to review its negative statements and warnings".

Referring to the recent easing of US economic sanctions on Sudan, Khidir said the ongoing dialogue between the two countries has brought bilateral relations to an advanced level of cooperation. Khidir described the new US travel warning as "inaccurate as it contradicts the statements by senior US officials and agencies praising Sudan's efforts to combat terrorism".

Khidir: "The [US] warning comes at a time when Sudan is witnessing a positive political and security atmosphere that has been praised and supported by many countries and regional and international organisations, including the United Nations, the African Union, the European Union, and the League of Arab States, as well as remarkable visits by the American envoy and many international and European officials to the various states of Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile."

The Foreign Ministry statement also highlighted President Omer al-Bashir's recent decision to extend the unilateral ceasefire in Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile, asserting that the Sudanese military and security apparatus are capable of providing the maximum security and protection for visitors.

Sanctions

At the beginning of this month, the USA issued a decision to lift a 20-year trade embargo on Sudan, however the decision leaves other sanctions in place for the time being, including those against individuals with arrest warrants related to atrocities committed during the conflict in Darfur. And it does not remove Sudan from the list of state sponsors of terrorism.

The Trump administration lifted the sanctions on Sudan "In recognition of the Government of Sudan's sustained positive actions to maintain a cessation of hostilities in conflict areas in Sudan, improve humanitarian access throughout Sudan, and maintain cooperation with the USA on addressing regional conflicts and the threat of terrorism".

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