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US Congress Delegation In Khartoum to Discuss Freedom, Mutual Dialogue

US Congress Delegation In Khartoum to Discuss Freedom, Mutual Dialogue

Sunday, 17 March, 2019 - 10:00
Sudanese demonstrators march during anti-government protests in Khartoum, Sudan, January 24, 2019. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah/File Photo
Khartoum - Ahmed Younis
A senior delegation from the US Congress is currently visiting Sudan to hold meetings with government officials and opponents ahead of the start of the second phase of the dialogue between Khartoum and Washington.

A Russian delegation also arrived in Khartoum, carrying an invitation from Russian President Vladimir Putin to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to participate in the first Russian-African summit in Sochi in October.

The US congressmen are headed by the leader of the Freedoms Bloc, Gus M. Bilirakis. The delegation will meet with the speaker of the Sudanese Parliament, the prime minister and ministers of Foreign Affairs and Justice, in addition to opposition leaders and representatives of professionals, businessmen and churches.

The visit comes at a time when the second round of the US-Sudanese dialogue is expected to begin over the removal of the name of Sudan from the list of state sponsors of terrorism and the normalization of relations between the two countries, following the lifting of the economic and trade embargo imposed by Washington on Khartoum.

In order to remove Sudan from the State Department's list of state sponsors of terrorism, Washington is asking the country to expand bilateral cooperation in combating terrorism, promoting human rights, freedom of religion and the press, improving access to humanitarian aid and stopping internal hostilities.

On a different note, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister and Special Presidential Envoy for the Middle East and Africa, Mikhail Bogdanov, told Asharq Al-Awsat following his meeting with the Sudanese president on Saturday that Russia was keen on Bashir’s personal participation in the upcoming Russian-African Summit in Sochi.

Bogdanov arrived in Khartoum on Friday for a three-day visit during which he will meet with Sudanese officials to discuss ways of boosting cooperation between the two countries.

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