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Arab Parliament launches plan to lift Sudan’s name from U.S. terror list

President of Sudan, Omer al-Bashir (C) stands between Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, (L), and Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa at the Arab League summit on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 in Jordan (AP Photo)

August 3, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Arab Parliament has announced the beginning of the first phase of its plan to lift Sudan’s name from the U.S. list of states sponsors of terrorism.

Sudan was placed on the U.S. terrorism list in 1993 over allegations it was harbouring Islamist militants working against regional and international targets.

On Wednesday, Arab Parliament speaker Meshal bin Fahmi al-Salami discussed with Sudan’s State Cabinet Minister Tarig Tawfiq ways to implement the plan to lift Sudan’s name from the terror list.

The official news agency SUNA quoted al-Salami as saying the Arab Parliament would send a senior delegation to the Pan-African Parliament to discuss the plan.

He pointed out that a joint letter signed by the speakers of both parliaments would be sent to speakers of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate as well as U.S. Secretary of State.

“This letter is supported by a legal memorandum including practical, moral, political, legal and humanitarian answers refuting allegations upon which Sudan’s name was placed on the [terror] list,” he said.

He added the Arab Parliament is working closely with the concerned bodies in Sudan to implement the plan, saying Sudan has been subjected to injustice by placing its name on the terror list.

In October 2017, Washington decided to lift economic sanctions on Sudan in line with a five-track framework reached by the countries in December 2016. Khartoum, accordingly, authorized humanitarian access to civilians in Darfur and unilaterally declared a cessation of hostilities in Darfur, the Blue Nile and South Kordofan states.

The two countries agreed to resume talks on the normalization of bilateral talks and the lift of remaining sanctions particularly its designation as a state sponsor of terrorist groups.

Sudanese officials insist on the need to remove Sudan from the list of terror states, pointing out that the country cannot benefit from the debt relief and international development aid without this measure.

But Washington insists on the need to improve Human rights, religious freedom and other freedoms in a way to create a conducive environment for the opposition group to take part in the constitutional process after the signing of a peace agreement with the armed groups.

(ST)