Israeli official voices support for Sudanese military coup in interview

Israeli official voices support for Sudanese military coup in interview
2 min read
25 October, 2021
An anonymous Israeli official has told a newspaper that Israel should support Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, the general who led Monday’s military coup in Sudan, because he was likely to continue normalisation.
Israel and Sudan announced that they would normalise relations in late 2020 [Getty]

An unnamed Israeli official has voiced support for a military coup in Sudan in an interview with the Israel Hayom newspaper.

The official said that Israel should support the head of the Sudanese military, General Abdel Fattah Burhan, who led the coup on Monday because he was more likely than Prime Minister Abdulla Hamdok to normalise ties with Israel.

The anonymous official also indirectly criticised a statement by Jeffrey Feltman, the US Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, who called the military takeover "utterly unacceptable" and indicated that the US would cut off aid to Sudan as a result.

"The country [Sudan] is not democratic as it was ruled for 30 years by the authoritarian regime of Omar Al-Bashir. While we understand why the US would like to see the democratization of Sudan, between the two Sudanese leaders, it is Burhan who is more inclined to bolster ties with the US and Israel," Israel Hayom quoted the official as saying.

"The coup was all but inevitable because the prime minister has been at odds with the military for several years and it was obvious that this would reach a decision point," the official added, comparing the situation to the one in Egypt after Hosni Mubarak was toppled by a popular uprising in 2011.

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Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Mohammed Morsi, was overthrown by a military coup led by current Egyptian leader Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi in 2013.

"In light of the fact that the military is the stronger force in the country, and since Burhan is its commander in chief, the events of Monday night increase the likelihood of stability in Sudan, which has critical importance in the region, and it increases the chances of stronger ties with the US, the West, and Israel in particular," the Israeli official added.

Sudan announced in late 2020 that it would normalise ties with Israel, following heavy pressure from the administration of former US President Donald Trump.

However, unlike the UAE, Bahrain, and Morocco, it has not taken practical steps to establish diplomatic relations or trade with Israel, due to the unpopularity of normalisation in the country and to tensions between Sudan’s military and civilian leadership.