Sudan cabinet votes, River Nile conclusion

Sudan cabinet votes, River Nile conclusion


Cabinet decision still needs approval of joint meeting of the contry's sovereign council and cabinet, which serves as its interim legislative body.

voted to repeal a 1958 law that forbade diplomatic and business relations with Israel, it said in a statement.

"The Council of Ministers has approved a bill (repealing the 1958 boycott of Israel law) for the year 2021," the cabinet said in a statement on Tuesday.

It also emphasised "Sudan's firm position on the establishment of a Palestinian state within the framework of a two-state solution".

The decision still needs the approval of a joint meeting of Sudan's sovereign council and cabinet, which serves as Sudan's interim legislative body. 

Sudan last year signed up to the Abraham Accords on regional reconciliation with Israel sponsored by the US administration of then-president Donald Trump, and Israeli officials have visited Sudan.

1958 law was in line with the policies of Arab nations at the time towards Israel.

Penalties for those who violated its stipulations, such as trading with Israelis, included up to 10 years in jail and a hefty fine.

But the political landscape has changed as Sudan, along with Gulf countries and Morocco, have built bridges with the Jewish state in deals mediated by Trump.

Sudan agreed to normalise ties with Israel in October last year, in a quid pro quo for Washington removing the country from its "state sponsors of terrorism" blacklist months later.

Khartoum maintained a rigid anti-Israel stance during the three-decade rule of former president Omar al Bashir, who was ousted amid mass protests in April 2019.

A post-Bashir transitional government has been pushing for re-integration with the international community and to rebuild the country's economy after decades of US sanctions and internal conflict.

The bill will be presented for final approval from the country's ruling Sovereign Council, made up of military and civilian figures, before it is passed into law.


And other News Egypt and Sudan have said that the latest round of talks with Ethiopia over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) in Kinshasa ended with no progress made.

Delegations from the three countries were meeting in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Tuesday hoping to break a deadlock in negotiations over a project Ethiopia says is key to its economic development and power generation.

Egypt fears the dam will imperil its supplies of Nile water, while Sudan is concerned about the dam's safety and water flows through its own dams and water stations.

Before the meetings began, Egypt had said they represented the last chance to re-start negotiations before Ethiopia begins to fill the dam for the second year in a row after seasonal rains begin this summer.

Sudan's Foreign Minister Mariam al Sadig al Mahdi told reporters on Tuesday that Ethiopia's insistence on such unilateral moves represents a violation of international law.

"This Ethiopian intransigence requires Sudan to consider all possible options to protect its security and its citizens," the Sudanese irrigation and water resources ministry said in a statement.

Ethiopian Water Minister Seleshi Bekele did not respond to texts and calls seeking comment.

Sudan and Egypt were aligned on a proposal to include the European Union, United States and United Nations in the negotiations, as an addition to current African Union mediators.

Both countries said Ethiopia rejected the proposal during the meeting, as well as other suggestions to re-start negotiations.

"This position reveals once again Ethiopia's lack of political will to negotiate in good faith," Egyptian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Sudan, which is also locked in a border dispute with Ethiopia, had hosted Egypt for air force training exercises that concluded on Saturday.

Last week, Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al Sisi said there would be "inconceivable instability in the region" if Egypt's water supply were affected by the dam.

"Without a new approach to negotiations, there becomes space for Ethiopia to impose a fait accompli and put all the peoples of the region in grave danger," said Sudan's al Mahdi.
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