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U.S. seeks to lift UN sanctions on Sudan: Pompeo


November 2, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo revealed that Washington is working with members of the United Security Council (UNSC) towards lifting long-standing sanctions imposed on Sudan.

Hamdok with Pompeo in Berlin on 14 February 2020

In a statement released today Pompeo explained the reasons behind the renewal of national emergency with respect to Sudan by President Donald Trump.

"This notice maintains certain Sudan-related authorities, which the United States relies on to implement our sanctions obligations under UN Security Council resolutions related to the conflict in Darfur," the top U.S. diplomat said.

"However, it does not reflect negatively on our improved bilateral relationship with Sudan or on the performance of the civilian-led transitional government and does not have any impact on the decision or procedures to rescind Sudan’s State Sponsor of Terrorism (SST) designation" he added.

The national emergency declaration is part of the powers conferred on U.S. presidents under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) which allows them to "regulate international commerce" when invoking such an emergency is in response to a perceived threat against the US.

In the case of Sudan, the declaration was made in 1997 when then-President Bill Clinton imposed comprehensive economic sanctions on Sudan.

Despite lifting these sanctions in 2017, the U.S. continues to impose Darfur related sanctions on seven individuals and one entity to date.

Pompeo hailed Sudan’s decision to move towards normalization with Israel describing it as a "courageous decision" that puts it on the road to "peace, security, and prosperity".

The Trump administration pressured Khartoum to recognize Israel and move to normalizing ties with the Jewish state in return for lifting terror-related sanctions as well as financial aid.

Pompeo said that they are "working with the Sudanese government and our international partners to identify circumstances that could result in lifting sanctions related to the Darfur conflict at the earliest opportunity".

"We have already begun consultations at the UN with this objective in mind".

He underscored that Washington recognizes "the significant improvements that the transitional government has made in advancing human rights and commend its efforts to bring peace to Darfur and Sudan’s other conflict areas".

Last week, Trump moved to waive restrictions on providing aid to the government of Sudan imposed under some U.S. laws and notified Congress about his decision.

He has also signalled his willingness to waive sanctions imposed on Sudan under the Child Soldiers Protection Act (CSPA).


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