US/World News

Sudan attempts to normalize ties with Israel

(JNS) Sudan’s transitional government announced on Thursday that it has reached a settlement with families of the victims of the 2000 attack on the USS Cole in Yemen in order to have the country removed from the U.S. terrorism list. The attack killed 17 sailors and wounded more than three dozen other people. Sudan was accused of providing support to Al-Qaeda, which claimed responsibility for the attack.

This comes after other moves by Khartoum to end its international pariah status, including a meeting between its interim leader, Gen. Abdel-Fattah Burhan, in Uganda with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to help establish more normalized relations.

Earlier this month, Sudan also tentatively agreed to allow flights heading to Israel to cross its airspace. And earlier this week, Sudan’s leadership said it would hand over longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir to the International Criminal Court to face war-crime charges for fighting in the western Darfur, the report said. The settlement with USS Cole victims is among the last issues remaining to be resolved for Sudan to be removed from the U.S. list of terrorism supporters.

Sudan’s information minister and interim government spokesman, Faisal Saleh, told The Associated Press that Justice Minister Nasr-Eddin Abdul-Bari had traveled last week to Washington to sign the deal. The country has been reported as desperate for an infusion of international funds.

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