Sudan and Israel agree US-brokered deal on normalizing relations

Sudan and Israel agree US-brokered deal on normalizing relations
Donald Trump on a phone call with the leaders of Sudan and Israel. Behind him are Mike Pompeo, Jared Kushner and the national security adviser, Robert O’Brien. Source: AP
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Daily US Times: Israel and Sudan have agreed to work towards normalizing relations between them. The deal is brokered by the US and it would make Sudan the third Arab country to set aside hostilities with Israel in the past two months.

On Friday, President Donald Trump sealed the agreement in a phone call with the Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu.

A joint statement by the three countries said: “The leaders agreed to the normalization of relations between Sudan and Israel and to end the state of belligerence between their nations.”

However, it was not immediately clear whether the transitional government of Sudan has the authority to strike such a deal. Sudan remains without a parliament and elections are due in 2022.

Trump sought to score domestic political points over his rival Joe Biden, asking Netanyahu: “Do you think Sleepy Joe could have made this deal?”

“Uh … one thing I can tell you is, we appreciate the help for peace from anyone in America,” Netanyahu responded.

The Republican President is seeking to appeal to pro-Israel voters, and to achieve that, his administration pushed countries in the Arab world to normalize relations with the Jewish state. The United Arab Emirates and Bahrain agreed to establish ties with Israel last month under US-mediated deals, despite protests from the Palestinian leadership.

Wasel Abu Youssef, a senior Palestinian Liberation Organisation official, described Sudan’s decision as a “new stab in the back”.

Though in recent decades, Khartoum has been largely marginal to Middle Eastern politics, the normalization has significant symbolic value.

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