Washington — Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok arrived in the USA on Sunday with a high-level Sudanese delegation. The main topic of the visit is lifting the US and UN sanctions against Sudan.
The delegation was welcomed in Washington by US Special Envoy to Sudan Ambassador Donald Booth and Sudan's permanent representative to the UN, Ambassador Omer Siddig.
Prime Minister Hamdok is accompanied by Minister of Defence Lt Gen Jamal Omar, Minister of Justice Nasreldin Abdelbari, Minister of Youth and Sports Walla El Boushi, and Minister of Religious Affair Nasreldin Mofara.
The visit will last six days. The official Sudanese News Agency (SUNA) reports that the delegation will meet officials at the State Department, the Treasury, the White House National Security Council, US Aid, the Ministry of Defence and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
The delegation will also meet the president of the World Bank, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), leading members of Congress, several research centres and business councils, and a number of Sudanese communities in the USA.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Mansour Bolad said on Sunday that Hamdok's visit to Washington is part of Sudan's efforts to normalise relations with the United States.
He added that it is crucial that the US lift sanctions against Sudan, because these sanctions impede the implementation of government programmes. For example, Sudan cannot borrow money from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as long as Sudan is on the US list of state sponsors of terrorism.
Three months ago the US State Department said it will test the commitment of Sudan's new transitional government to human rights, freedom of speech, and humanitarian access before it agrees to remove the country from the US state sponsors of terrorism list.
Two weeks ago a UN delegation visited Sudan to discuss lifting UN sanctions.
While Hamdok did address the General Assembly of the United Nations at the end of September, it has been years since a senior Sudanese official paid an official visit to Washington.