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Sudanese president heading to Eritrea tomorrow: report

February 1, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese president Omer Hassan al-Bashir will fly to Eritrea on Saturday for talks with president Isaias Afewerki, according to a news report.

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FILE - Sudan’s President Omer Hassan al-Bashir (R) meets Eritrea’s President Isaias Afewerki (L) in Sudan’s capital Khartoum June 12, 2006 (Reuters)

The pro-government Akhir-Lahza newspaper said that the visit will last for a few hours and that Bashir will be accompanied by presidential affairs minister Bakri Hassan Saleh, intelligence director Mohamed Atta al-Moula Abbas and other officials.

Sources told the newspaper that Bashir will seek assurances on the situation in Eritrea following reports of unrest in the wake of a move by soldiers last month who briefly seized the information ministry in Asmara and demanded the release of thousands of political prisoners.

Various media networks have reported that the mutiny was over and calm has been restored. However, unconfirmed sources coming out of Eritrea say the mutineers left the ministry only after the regime in Asmara promised to meet their demands and that the two sides are currently in negotiations.

An Eritrean journalist told Sudan Tribune last month that Afewerki was scheduled to travel to Khartoum few days prior to the incident but hi trip was canceled without explanation. There was no independent confirmation of this.

(ST)