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Sudanese-British strategic dialogue to convene this week in Khartoum

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Sudan's Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Abdel Ghani al-Naim poses for a picture with Neil Wigan, UK Foreign Office Director for Africa on 17 October 2017 (Photo FO)

April 23, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Foreign Ministry on Sunday said arrangements are underway to hold the second phase of the strategic dialogue between Sudan and the United Kingdom this week.

On Sunday, Sudan’s acting Foreign Minister Mohamed Abdallah Idriss has received a copy of the credentials of the new British Ambassador to Sudan Irfan Siddiq in order to present it to President Omer al-Bashir.

During the meeting, the Sudanese minister stressed his government’s keenness to cooperate with the new ambassador in order to facilitate his mission.

For his part, Siddiq conveyed greetings of the UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson to his Sudanese counterpart.

Meanwhile, the UK embassy in Khartoum said a senior British delegation would arrive in Khartoum on Tuesday to participate in the meeting with the Sudanese side.

In a press release extended to Sudan Tribune on Monday, the UK embassy said the delegation would be headed by Neil Wigan, Director for Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom.

According to the press release, the dialogue would include meetings with the Foreign Ministry as well as other Sudanese officials, saying it would cover a number of issues including bilateral relations, migration, Sudan’s peace talks, human rights, trade, cultural relations and the situation in the region.

Since 2015, Sudan and the UK have started a dialogue upon request from Khartoum to push forward bilateral ties.

In March 2016, Sudan and the UK held the first strategic consultations meetings between the two countries in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum. The meeting was considered the first talks of its kind at the ministerial level in 25 years.

The two countries agreed to exchange visits at the level of senior officials from the two countries along with increasing cooperation in the fields of economy, investment and culture.

The UK Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan Chris Trott last year visited Khartoum several times to discuss ways to develop bilateral relations and encourage Khartoum efforts to reduce the illegal immigration from the Horn of African countries towards Europe and Britain especially.

The dialogue also was seen within the framework of the after-Brexit policy aiming to develop trade relations with the former British colonies.

(ST)

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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