Sudan: Ambassador Satti Breaks Thick Ice Between Khartoum and Washington

20 September 2020

Khartoum — After a little delay Ambassador Nureldin Satti on Wednesday presented his letters of credence to U.S President Donald Trump as Sudan's Ambassador Plenipotentiary and Extraordinary to Washington, breaking a deadlock in full Sudanese-U.S ambassadorial representation that continued for 23 years. Hitherto the two countries confined their diplomatic representation to the level of chargé d'affaires.

The U.S accreditation of Dr. Satti was met with great relief from most American and Sudanese circles, as the man enjoys wide respect here in Sudan and in the US.

At the level of Sudanese diplomacy, Ambassador Satti had served for two decades, after which he tendered his resignation in protest of the malpractices of the defunct regime of Omar Albashir. On that occasion he had stated that, as ambassador, he was ready to serve his country but not that regime.

Ambassador Satti had represented Sudan as ambassador to France, Portugal, Switzerland and the Vatican. He also served his country as permanent representative to the UNESCO.

As minister plenipotentiary he served Sudan in Chad and Belgium. His diplomatic career also took him to Burundi, Rwanda, Libya, Somalia, Iraq and the Philippines. He had also served in the UN. All of these assignments had earned him wide expertise in such varied and sensitive issues as mediation, peacekeeping, conflict resolution, and the building of peace culture, in particular in the African states.

Beside his diplomatic expertise, Ambassador Satti had assumed a number of intellectual and consultative offices. Here he was member of the WoodroWilson center in Washington as an African thinker during 2008-2009, heading the Sudan group in the center. He also served as consultant in the Geneva Center for Human Rights and a consultant of the Crisis Management Initiative in Helsinki. He was also active in a lot of matters extending from Iraq to the African Horn.

But this busy career did not prevent Dr. Satti from writing for the press and writing on intellectual matters like the Sudanese identity and social issues related to Sudan and Africa.

He wrote a number of books that touched upon 'the failure of the Sudanese elite', peace culture and the role of youth in social change.

His activity in peace building has qualified him to be among the first Sudanese intellectuals to speak about peace culture before this concept could develop in its present magnitude.

Ambassador Satti is widely known for his high command of French, being classified as one of the best foreigners to have spoken this language. Beside Arabic and French, he also has excellent command of English.

Dr. Satti was born in the City of Omdurman here in 1946. He graduated from the Faculty of Arts, the University of Khartoum, in 1969. He obtained an M.A from the University of Leon, France and then a PhD in arts from Paris University in 1979. He served as lecturer of French at the University of Khartoum, before joining his country's Foreign Ministry.

Mr. Satti is special in that he had combined his service as a diplomat in the Sudanese Foreign Ministry with multi-party diplomacy in the United Nations by his involvement in peace issues and conflict resolution. This profile best qualifies him to handle the difficult job ahead of him represented in removing his country from the list of countries the US says support terrorism and returning the country to the community of world countries.

This is a job he is qualified to achieve in the best way, according to his colleague, former ambassador Alfatih Hamad.

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