Khartoum — The new Head of Delegation of the European Union to Sudan, Robert van den Dool, handed his credentials to Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, President of the Sovereign Council, in Khartoum today.
In a press release issued after the ceremony, van den Dool states he congratulated El Burhan "with the achievements so far of the council and the transitional government in progressing the transition to a democratic government along the lines of the constitutional agreement signed on 17 August 2019.
"I assured the president that the European Union and its member states are very keen on being a key partner for the transitional authorities," he stated.
"I informed him that we are eager to hear more about the policy priorities of the government and that we welcome the first indications of these priorities, such as peace, economy, women, youth, human rights and humanitarian aid.
"Particularly, the appointment of the government with four female ministers and the first female chief of justice in Africa are important signals that the new Sudanese government is making important efforts towards equal rights for men and women.
"I also told the president that we welcome the efforts to reach out to armed groups to bring about sustained and sustainable peace in the country, as an important prerequisite to succeed.
"Expectations are high and I assured the President that the EU stands ready to play its role in the international efforts to support the transitional process." - Head of Delegation of the European Union to Sudan
"We hosted the last encounter of the "Friends of Sudan" last July, and remain closely engaged in the coordination process of international support. We are happy that Sudan will join the next "Friends of Sudan" meeting in Washington next week.
"I informed the president that we are preparing an EU support package to the transition and we hope to continue discussions on support and the transition agendas with the appropriate ministries.
"This EU package stands in a long history of support to the Sudanese people. The EU is one of the biggest humanitarian donors to Sudan.
"Since 2011, the European Union provided around half a billion euro to humanitarian organisations to respond to the various crises in the country.
"I mentioned that we appreciate the Sudanese interest in ratifying the revised Cotononu Agreement as this would be an important step for cementing the relations between Sudan and the European Union as well as for opening up opportunities for important financial support such as for example the European Investment Bank investments and for regular political dialogue.
"I also expressed our support for delisting Sudan from the US state Sponsors of terrorist List.
"In conclusion, I reiterated the need for Sudan to create a completely new enabling environment based on the humanitarian principles and relevant legal frameworks.
In this regard, the EU welcomes the recent announcement by the Humanitarian Aid Commissioner on the facilitation of movement of humanitarian workers and the delivery of humanitarian assistance."
"I am honoured and proud to have been welcomed by the President of the Sovereign Council to the country. I am eagerly looking forward to represent the European Union as Ambassador in this all-important period of transition in the country," van den Dool concluded his press statement.
The 54-year-old career diplomat from the Netherlands has been serving in the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs for 28 years, and is specialised in macroeconomics, development, and public finance management. He previously served as Dutch Ambassador to South Sudan and Ivory Coast, and during his career has also been posted to Mozambique, South Africa, and Zambia.