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Sudan welcomes al-Mahdi’s decision to return to the country

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Al-Mahdi, ridding a horse, waves hands to his supporters after his arrival to Sudan on 26 January 2017 (ST Photo)
October 20, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese government has welcomed statements by the leader of the opposition National Umma Party (NUP) al-Sadiq al-Mahdi in which he expressed his intention to return to the country.

After his election as the head of the opposition alliance Sudan Call last March, the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) filed a case against al-Mahdi accusing him of plotting against the constitution because he is leading armed groups that resort to violence.

The veteran leader dismissed the claim saying that the Sudan Call is a political alliance formed to reach a negotiated solution with the government, pointing to the Roadmap Agreement signed between the umbrella and the government in March and August 2016.

Earlier this month al-Mahdi said key Sudanese officials proposed him to return home where he can continue to plead for democratic reforms.

Al-Mahdi added he would return to Sudan before the end of the year, saying he requested his party to form a team of lawyers to defend him in the expected trial.

On the other hand, the Sudanese presidential assistant and deputy chairman of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) Faisal Hassan Ibrahim on Friday welcomed al-Mahadi’s announcement of his intention to return to the country.

“We welcome the return of the Imam [al-Mahdi] as long as he consented to the peaceful [opposition] work inside the country,” said Ibrahim in his address before a meeting of the NCP women sector on Friday

Al-Mahdi who left Khartoum last February was residing in Cairo until the first of July when the Egyptian authorities declared him persona non grata and prevented him from entering into the country. He is now living n the British capital London.

(ST)

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