August 31, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – The former director of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) Salah Gosh may soon be chosen for a top post that would be tasked with seeking to improve often tenuous relationship with South Sudan.
- Salah Gosh, the former chief of Sudan’s intelligence service, is seen following his pardon by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on July 10, 2013, in the capital Khartoum, on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan (ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP/Getty Images)
The ex-spy chief, who was charged with plotting a coup against president Omer Al-Bashir in November of last year, was released last month after prosecutors dropped charges against him in consultation with the presidency.
He was the head of NISS for about a decade until Bashir replaced him in 2009.
During his tenure Gosh boosted cooperation with America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), particularly after the 9 September 2001 attacks on New York and Washington.
After leaving the security service he became presidential security adviser but was sacked in early 2011.
The presidential advisor, Abdel-Rahman Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi, currently holds the responsibility for relations with Juba but little activity was seen on his part in this regard.
A source told Al-Youm Al-Tali daily newspaper on Saturday that South Sudan’s ambassador to Khartoum, Mayan Dut Wol, met for several hours with Gosh on Wednesday at his office in Khartoum.
The source further pointed that the ambassador has frequently come to Gosh’s office following the latter’s release, adding that the two men discussed ways for achieving a comprehensive vision for a balanced relation between the two countries.
Gosh, who once headed Sudan’s delegation for negotiations with South Sudan, had earlier said that the southern government does not have a unified view towards the relation with Khartoum and that Khartoum could deal with some parties within it.
Sudan and South Sudan signed a series of cooperation agreements, which covered oil, citizenship rights, security issues, banking, border trade among others. In March of this year, the two countries signed a matrix containing implementation timelines for these accords.
Last June, the Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir ordered the closure of pipelines carrying oil from landlocked South Sudan, accusing the latter of continuing to back rebel groups fighting his government particularly in border states of Blue Nile and South Kordofan.
Bashir later agreed to delay his decision after appeals from China and the African Union (AU) while investigate claims of rebel support by the two countries.
From the very beginning, Sudan has insisted that security arrangements should be concluded before implementing other aspects of the cooperation agreements are executed.