December 5, 2012 (WASHINGTON) – The United States Navy denied statements made by Sudan foreign minister Ali Karti yesterday saying that U.S. ships made a stop for a few hours in Port Sudan last month.
Karti used this argument to defend Sudan’s decision to allow Iranian ships to dock last October saying this is normal and routine in the context of international relations.
But a U.S. navy official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Sudan Tribune today that they "don’t have any record" of their ships visiting the country last month.
Khartoum denied that granting permission to Iranian ships was linked to a suspected Israeli air strike on a weapons factory in the Sudanese capital few days prior to the visit.
While the Jewish state refused to confirm or deny being behind the attack some Israeli analysts suggested that the factory is likely a hub used and overseen by Iran to deliver ammunition to other parties outside Sudan such as Gaza or Southern Lebanon.
The Sudanese foreign minister last month along with lawmakers yesterday have criticized relations with Iran saying it is becoming problematic for Khartoum and negatively affecting ties with other countries.