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Washington unfreezes funds of Sudan’s embassy in Seoul: minister

August 9, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Ministry of Finance on Wednesday said the U.S. Department of Treasury has lifted the ban on frozen funds belonging to the Sudanese embassy in Seoul.

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The US imposed comprehensive sanctions on Sudan in 1997 (US Embassy in Khartoum website)

Last month, Sudan’s Finance Minister Mohamed Salih al-Rikabi said Khartoum received a letter from the U.S. Department of Treasury stating the full resumption of financial transactions between Sudan and international banks.

In a press release on Wednesday, State Finance Minister Abdel-Rahman Dirar said the U.S. Department of Treasury unfroze funds belonging to Sudan’s embassy in Seoul, describing the measure as “positive move that reflects improvement in financial relations between Sudan and the outside world”.

He pointed the fund was transferred to the South Korean, Daewoo Group and has been frozen since 2015, saying the company has recently received the fund into its account at an American bank.

Dirar pointed out that the decision comes within the recent financial measures taken by the U.S. government towards Sudan, saying “we look forward to seeing the full lifting of sanctions particularly after Sudan has met all the requirements”.

Last January, former U.S. President Barack Obama issued an executive order easing the 19-year Sudan sanctions on a probationary basis. The sanctions relief was to become permanent on 12 July unless the U.S. Administration acted to stop it.

President Donald Trump, in a new executive order issued last month, moved that deadline back by three months, while keeping the temporary sanctions relief in place, citing the need to take more time to assess the robust process.

(ST)