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Sudan backs Saudi Arabia’s expulsion of Canadian ambassador

August 7, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese government has announced support for Saudi Arabia’s decision to expel the Canadian Ambassador and freeze trade ties between the two countries.

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Canada foreign minister Chrystia Freeland (File photo/Reuters)

Saudi Arabia on Monday expelled Canada’s Ambassador to Riyadh Dennis Horak over alleged interference in Saudi domestic affairs after statements by the Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland expressing concern over Riyadh’s jailing of civil-society and women’s rights activists.

The Kingdom also froze new trade and investment with Canada worth billions of dollars and recalled its envoy to the country.

In a press release on Monday, Sudanese Presidency said Sudan’s condemnation for the Canadian allegations is in line with its principled position of non-interference in the internal affairs of other states.

It added such allegations undermine sovereignty and independence and impose trusteeship on other states under flimsy pretexts.

The press release pointed out that Sudan has suffered from such interference, saying Saudi Arabia has every right to take any measures to deter those interferences and maintain its sovereignty.

In recent years, Sudan has developed close diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia.

In February 2016, Sudan followed Saudi Arabia’s lead and severed diplomatic ties with Iran after Saudi embassy in Tehran was attacked amid a row over Riyadh execution of a Shiite Muslim cleric.

Saudi Arabia is the largest Arab investor in Sudan with more than 590 projects. In 2016, Saudi investments in Sudan increased to $15bn compared to $11bn in 2015.

Also, the Sudanese army has been participating in the Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen since 2015 in a regional effort to back the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi after he was ousted from the capital Sanaa by the Iran-backed Shiite Houthi rebels.

In October 2017, President Omer al-Bashir thanked Saudi Arabia and UAE for their strong support to the lift of 20-year U.S. economic embargo.

The two countries vowed to continue supporting Sudan removal from the list of countries supporting terrorism.

(ST)