Politics

Sudan, Israel agree to open embassies soon: Source

Israeli Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen visited Sudan on Monday

Bahram Abdel Moneim and Zain Khalil   | 26.01.2021
Sudan, Israel agree to open embassies soon: Source

KHARTOUM

Sudan and Israel agreed to open embassies soon during Monday’s visit by Israeli Intelligence Minister Eli Cohen to the capital Khartoum, a Sudanese government source told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday.

“The Israeli minister's visit to Khartoum aimed at strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries in various fields,” the source said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

“Cohen and [Chairman of Sudan’s Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah] Al-Burhan agreed to exchange the opening of embassies between the two countries at the earliest time,” the source said.

On Monday, Cohen visited Khartoum for talks with Sudanese leaders, on the first public official visit by an Israeli government minister to Sudan.

In a statement after his return to Israel, Cohen said he discussed diplomatic, security, and economic issues with Sudanese leaders.

"I have confidence that this visit lays the foundations on many important aspects of cooperation which will help both Israel and Sudan," he said.

During the visit, Cohen met with Al-Burhan, Defense Minister Yassin Ibrahim, and other officials.

According to the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation, the discussions included the possibility of Israel joining the Council of Arab and African States bordering the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

According to the broadcaster, a Sudanese delegation is expected to visit Israel soon.

There was no official immediate comment from Khartoum on the visit.

On Oct. 23, Sudan announced the controversial normalization of its relations with Israel, a move vehemently rejected by several national political forces, including parties in the ruling coalition.

According to Israel’s Walla news portal, the White House tried to organize an official signing ceremony in the last weeks of then-US President Donald Trump’s administration with the participation of Al-Burhan and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The plans, however, were canceled due to coronavirus restrictions in Israel and military tensions between Sudan and Ethiopia.

*Ibrahim Mukhtar contributed to this report from Ankara

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