Sudan, U.S. sign agreement to restore sovereign immunities

 

October 31, 2020

 

By Sudan Tribune

 

KHARTOUM – The Ministry of Justice announced Friday that Sudan and the United States have signed a claim agreement to restore the sovereign immunity of the East African country.

“According to the agreement, which will enter into force after legislation is enacted, Sudan will pay $335 million, on top of approximately $72 million already paid, for distribution to victims of terrorism,” reads a statement released by the justice ministry.

“In exchange, the default judgments and claims against Sudan in U.S. courts will be dismissed, and Sudan’s sovereign immunities under U.S. law will be restored to those enjoyed by countries that have never been designated by the United States as a State Sponsor of Terrorism,” stressed the statement.

The deal is a part of the agreed process to remove Sudan from the blacklist, after a letter by President Donald Trump to the Congress earlier this month notifying the delisting.

To avoid new lawsuits, Sudan needs to restore its sovereign immunities, which it lost when it had been added in the list of state sponsors of terrorism. However, only Congress can restore the immunities of a foreign country.

Despite the opposition of some Democrat senators, the deal reportedly has large support in the Congress.

Sudanese Minister of Justice Nasr al-Din Abdel Bari said his government “greatly regrets” to pay such significant sum of money, given the tough economic crisis the country is experiencing.

“But today’s agreement allows Sudan and its people to resolve historical liabilities, restore normal relations with the United States, and move forward toward democracy and better economic times. Today’s agreement is an investment in a prosperous future for Sudan and its people,” said Abdel Bari.

$ 60 additional aid to Sudan

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) on Friday, announced an additional $60 million in humanitarian assistance to respond to severe flooding in Sudan.

This support will include life-saving emergency assistance with food, shelter, health, and livelihoods. Also, it includes providing safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene supplies.

“This announcement comes as Sudan is entering a promising new era for its people. Along with joining the Abraham Accords and entering a peace agreement with the State of Israel,” added the USAID.

Under the pressure of the White House, Sudan said willing to normalize relations with Israel and accepted to negotiate a deal with the Israeli government.

The normalization was a last-minute condition imposed by Trump administration before to remove it from the terror list.

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