Home | News    Friday 30 October 2020

Sudan, U.S. to sign bilateral claims agreement


U.S. President Donald Trump looks on following a swearing-in ceremony for Defence Secretary James Mattis at the Pentagon on January 27, 2017 (Reuters/Carlos Barria Photo)October 29, 2020 (WASHINGTON) - The government of Sudan and the United States are set to sign an agreement on Friday morning related to terror-related claims.

The agreement sets the terms of the settlement between Sudan and families of terror-related incidents particularly the 1998 twin embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania as well as the USS Cole bombings.

Last week, Sudan transferred $335 million to an escrow bank account to pay for these settlements.

The money will not be disbursed until the U.S. Congress passes legislation granting Sudan legal peace and reinstating its sovereign immunity which was lost due to a 1993 U.S. decision to designate Khartoum as a state sponsor of terrorism.

U.S. President Donald Trump notified Congress on Monday of his decision to remove Sudan from this blacklist.

This followed a move by the Sudanese government, under U.S. pressure, to agree to begin normalization talks with Israel.

Also, the legal peace bill has hit a snag with key Democratic Senate figures insisting on adding 9/11 victims’ provisions to the bill and wanting more money paid out to 1998 embassy families.

In a related issue, Trump is set to publish a memorandum tomorrow delegating to the Secretary of State his powers to waive sanctions on Sudan related to the latter being found to be a violator of the Child Soldiers Protection Act of 2008 (CSPA).

Sudan was placed on the list last year over reports that it enlisted children as part of its troops fighting along with Saudi Arabia in Yemen.

CSPA requires the State Department to report annually on countries using child fighters, defined as "any person under 18 years of age who takes a direct part in hostilities as a member of governmental armed forces".

Countries on the list cannot receive U.S. aid, training and weapons unless the president issues full or partial waivers of those sanctions based on “national interest.”

But for Sudan, its terror designation meant that these sanctions are already in place.


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