October 29, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – Sudanese opposition groups spoke on Monday in a unified voice of condemnation against the alleged Israeli attack on an arms factory in the capital Khartoum last week but criticized the government handling of the crisis and called for relocating military complexes outside of populated areas.
Israel has neither confirmed nor denied its responsibility for the attack that destroyed storage containers and parts of Al-Yarmook military factory in the southwestern suburbs of Khartoum on Tuesday’s mid-night. According to Khartoum, however, it was Israeli jet fighters that bombed the facility, killing two people and causing panic among residents of near-by areas.
The Jewish state sees the Muslim east African country as an ally of its arch-enemy Iran as well as a conduit of arms smuggling activities to Gaza strip which is controlled by the Islamist militant group Hamas.
In a report published this week, the Sunday Times, a UK paper, cited Western “security sources” as confirming that Israel did carry out the operation and giving details of how it was executed.
The coalition of mainstream opposition parties, the National Consensus Forces (NCF), denounced in a statement seen by Sudan Tribune “the aggression by the Zionist entity against the country and violation of its national sovereignty”
However, the statement noted that this attack happened despite the gigantic budget allocated to security at the expense of services that should be available to citizens.
The statement added that the attack confirmed that the resources given to security were just harnessed to suppress opposition to the government and not to repulse foreign aggressions on the country.
NCF called for relocating all military facilities outside of areas populated by civilians.
Similarly, the opposition National Umma Party (NUP) condemned the alleged attack and urged international institutions to do likewise and hold Israel accountable for its “act of aggression.”
The statement alluded to rumors about the links between the destroyed factory and groups of resistance to Israel in Palestine, warning that choosing to become a part of this confrontation must be predicated on national consensus and strong defense capabilities.
“Now we want to know the truth about joint military manufacturing, and if it is true, then it has well-known consequences and what are the defense measures taken to protect the country” the statement added.
It said that the aggression should not deflect attention from the defense lapse and importance of addressing national concerns by ending the state of wars and polarization in the country.
NUP also called for removing military facilities from residential areas and compensating affected citizens.
In another statement, the Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) described the alleged attack as a gross violation of international laws and norms. But SCP also attacked the government’s handling of the crisis accusing it of weakness and failing to protect the country.
The party also demanded that the government informs the public about the details of the aggression and the secrets surrounding the factory and its role.
In 2010, a Sudanese opposition daily was shut down for reporting that a military factory in Khartoum is being used to manufacture weapons for Iran and Hamas.