Turkish VP arrives in Khartoum, meets Sudan counterpart

By Mumin Altas and Aydogan Kalabalik

KHARTOUM (AA) – Turkish Vice-President Fuat Oktay on Tuesday held talks with Sudanese First Vice-President Bakri Hassan Saleh in capital Khartoum.

“We will quickly begin to implement projects on which we have made agreements and set a framework, which will lay the basis for social development that will help Sudan stand on its own feet and have a say in the region, ” Oktay said after the meeting.

He went on to stress that Turkey and Sudan shared “strong ties” stemming from common historical bonds.

Oktay added that, following his earlier visit to Sudan in 2017, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had given him clear instructions to help resolve Sudan’s problems.

“We have been instructed to develop an economic model with a view to resolving all Sudan’s problems, ” he added. “If the Sudanese are suffering then we are suffering. ”

The same instructions, he noted, were also given by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

Drawing attention to both men’s determination to improve relations, boost bilateral trade and ensure Sudan's continued development, Oktay said: “Our determination must be accompanied by technical support so our objectives can be fully realized.”

Oktay went on to point out that Sudan has significant potential in both agriculture and livestock and that Turkey hoped to contribute to unlocking this potential.

He added that the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency had already begun restoration work on Sudan’s Suakin Island in hopes of transforming the island into a major tourist attraction.

The Turkish VP also noted that both Sudan and Turkey enjoyed close cooperation in the military and defense fields and that Turkey had transferred to Sudan much of its experience and know-how in the health and education sectors.

“We must quickly establish the necessary mechanisms to ensure that Sudan's oilfields are operational, land is allocated for agriculture and stockbreeding, and trade is improved,” he said.

“We must complete this now; that's why we’re here. Should the process take too long, our citizens will have to pay for the delay in order to realize our bilateral trade goal of $10 billion. We are still lagging behind by $1 billion, ” he added.

Saleh, for his part, thanked Oktay for the visit.

Noting that both countries shared historical bonds, he said that bilateral relations had risen to a new level after President Erdogan's visit to Sudan last year.

“Our brother-country Turkey stands by our side and supports us in the international community,” he said.

“Turkey also supports us in domestic affairs, helping us with hospital and investment projects. ”

“Sudan is a rich country in terms of agriculture, stockbreeding and oil,” Saleh said. “We have benefited from Turkey's experience and know-how on these subjects.”

“We must carry out these development projects on time in order to achieve our goals, ” he added.

Oktay was accompanied on his visit by Turkish Agriculture and Forest Minister Bekir Pakdemirli, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan, Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Mithat Cansiz, and Turkish Ambassador to Khartoum Irfan Neziroglu.

*Ali Murat Alhas contributed to this report from Ankara

Alaturka Gazetesi

Sudanese PM expelled from prominent feminist’s funeral

By Mohammed Amin

KHARTOUM (AA) – Sudanese Prime Minister Bakri Hassan Saleh — and a handful of other officials — were expelled from the funeral of feminist leader Fatima Ahmed Ibrahim, which was held Wednesday in capital Khartoum.

Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour and Khartoum State Governor Abdul-Rahim Mohamed Hussein were also reportedly expelled from the event by angry funeral attendees.

Video footage of the incident has been widely circulated on social media by critics of President Omar al-Bashir’s government.

Thousands of Sudanese took part in the funeral for the late communist feminist leader, who passed away in London last Saturday at the age of 84.

A number of mourners at Wednesday’s funeral chanted anti-government slogans demanding “freedom” and “democracy”.

Ibrahim was the recipient of numerous awards — from the UN and other international organizations — for her work promoting feminism.

Alaturka Gazetesi

Tunisian PM in Khartoum for talks with Sudan officials

By Mohammad al-Khatam

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AA) – Tunisian Prime Minister Yusuf al-Shahid arrived in Sudanese capital Khartoum on Wednesday for a two-day official visit.

His visit is the first trip to Sudan by a Tunisian prime minister since former Tunisian President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was toppled in 2011’s “Arab Spring” uprisings.

Al-Shahid was received at Khartoum’s international airport by Sudanese counterpart Bakri Hassan Saleh.

He is expected to meet later on Wednesday with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

On Thursday, al-Shahid and Saleh will co-chair a meeting of the Sudan-Tunisia Higher Committee at which attendees will discuss security, political, economic, commercial and transport-related issues.

The committee is expected to wrap up its meeting with the signing of 20 agreements and MoUs, including one on the planned resumption of Tunisian Airlines flights to Khartoum, which have been suspended since 1989.

Both Saleh and al-Shahid, the latter of whom is accompanied on his visit by 100 Tunisian entrepreneurs, will also attend a businessmen’s meeting on Thursday to discuss means of improving bilateral trade, which currently stands at less than $100 million per year.


Sudan gets PM for first time in 28 years

By Mohamed Elkhatem and Afra Aksoy KHARTOUM, Sudan (AA) – For the first time in 28 years Sudan has a prime minister, presidential assistant Ibrahim Mahmoud said Wednesday. Bakri Hassan Saleh was appointed to the post by President Omar al-Bashir, according to Mahmoud, who spoke at a news conference. “Saleh will also continue his duty as the president’s first assistant” and form a Cabinet while consulting with partners who attended a national dialog process, Mahmoud said. Al-Bashir eliminated the post of prime minister when he came to power in 1989 following a bloodless coup. But late last year, the president proposed constitutional reforms that included the appointment of a prime minister. Al-Bashir launched a national dialogue in 2015 in an attempt to end insurgencies in Sudan’s border regions but last October the talks were boycotted by the main opposition parties. Participants proposed the formation of a national unity government and drafting a new Constitution to help resolve the country’s woes. Sudan currently has a transitional Constitution that was adopted in 2005, before the 2011 split by the country’s south following a two-decade-old civil war.