Burhan to Asharq Al-Awsat: Normalization with Israel Benefits Sudan
The head of Sudan’s Transitional Sovereign Council, Lt. Gen. Abdel-Fattah Al-Burhan, said that his Feb. 3 meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Uganda came “within the framework of Sudan’s search for national and security interests.”
“During the meeting that took place in Entebbe, Uganda, we stressed the role of the Israeli side in supporting Sudan with regards to the list of state sponsors of terrorism,” Burhan revealed in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat.
He stressed that ongoing contacts, “which are greatly welcome in Sudan”, will not be interrupted.
Burhan said he would work to achieve his country’s interests, adding that the executive council (the government), would manage upcoming communication and handle diplomatic relations once established.
The Sudanese official said a small committee would be formed to follow up on the matter, stressing that the normalization of relations between Sudan and Israel was receiving broad popular support.
Working for Sudan’s best interest “is widely supported, while only a specific number of ideological groups oppose it,” he emphasized.
On ties with the Gulf, Burhan said: “We have good relations with the Gulf States and the entire region. Such ties are … are strengthened by interests, in order to achieve the security and welfare of all the peoples of the region.”
“As for our relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, it is special and strategic; I will visit Riyadh soon, at the invitation of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz,” he remarked.
On Yemen, the head of the Sudanese Sovereign Council underlined the need for a solution to the country’s war through a long-term political vision.
“Our military presence within the Arab coalition forces to restore legitimacy in Yemen, and the continued participation of our forces depend on what can be realistically achieved regarding a political solution,” he noted.
Asked about thorny issues with Egypt, Burhan stressed that the two countries have common interests.
“Sudan addresses such issues in a way that preserves the rights of the Sudanese people, and at the same time it seeks to preserve security and peace in the region, and avoid tensions,” he affirmed.
As for the situation in Libya, Burhan said he hoped that the parties to the conflict would reach effective political solutions soon, adding that his country’s vision on Libya converged with that of the United Nations.
“In view of the sensitive situation, Sudan does not interfere in Libyan affairs,” he told Asharq Al-Awsat.
Touching on negotiations on the Great Renaissance Dam, Burhan stressed his country was dealing with the talks to meet the interests of the peoples of the region, while preserving Sudan’s legitimate rights to the Nile waters.
Locally, Burhan said that the challenges facing the transitional period included “ending war, achieving sustainable peace and then addressing the economic and living crisis.”
“There is great harmony between us and civilians in the government and the Sovereign Council. The demands of the Sudanese revolution must be met by all… and questioning the military’s sincerity is a disease that is embedded in some people’s ideological agendas,” Burhan stated.