Sudan's Umma Party threatens to boycott transitional government over Israel normalisation

Sudan's Umma Party threatens to boycott transitional government over Israel normalisation
Sadiq Al-Mahdi threatened the Sudanese transitional government over normalisation.
3 min read
23 October, 2020
Sudan is protesting normalisation [Getty]

The Sudanese opposition Umma Party, led by Sadiq Al-Mahdi, attacked the institutions of the transitional government for pushing ahead with normalising ties with Israel.

In a statement published by the Sudanese News Agency (SUNA), the Umma party threatened to withdraw support for the institutions of the transitional period, "if it undertook to establish relations with the apartheid and occupation state."

The statement said that the institutions of the transitional government are not qualified to take any decisions on such controversial issues such as normalisation, stressing that establishing relations with "the apartheid state is similar to its establishment with apartheid South Africa before liberation."

Al-Mahdi demanded that "all institutions of the transitional government abide by this position," referring to an appeal to the Bar Association to take over the submission of reports and inquiries for violators of the Israeli boycott, and which the Umma party's lawyers will take up.

Read also: Normalisation deal with Netanyahu would betray Palestinians, along with Sudan's refugees in Israel

He urged that "treason is not a viewpoint protected by freedom," stressing that "relations with the apartheid state, Israel, have no connection with peace. Rather, they will push towards more confrontations as there is no peace without justice."

This comes as Sudanese officials confirmed on Thursday that a senior US-Israeli delegation flew to Sudan on a private jet this week to wrap up a deal that would make Sudan the third Arab country to normalise ties with Israel this year.

Such a deal would deepen Sudan's engagement with the West after President Donald Trump's conditional agreement this week to remove the North African nation from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. It also would deliver a foreign policy achievement for Trump as he seeks re-election on Nov. 3, and give a boost to his embattled ally, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Trump's national security adviser, Robert O'Brien, told the "Fox & Friends" program on Thursday morning that "there's more to come" after the recent US-brokered accords between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Trump appears eager to complete the deal before the US election, hoping for another foreign policy achievement following the US-brokered diplomatic pacts between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain, known as the "Abraham Accords".

While Sudan does not have the influence or wealth of the Gulf Arab countries, a deal with the African country would be deeply significant for Israel.

Sudan hosted a landmark Arab League conference after the 1967 Mideast war where eight Arab countries approved the "three no's": no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel and no negotiations.

In 1993, the US designated Sudan a state sponsor of terrorism, in part for its support of anti-Israel militant groups, including Hamas and Hezbollah. Under al-Bashir, Sudan was believed to have served as a pipeline for Iran to supply weapons to Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip. Israel was believed to have been behind airstrikes in Sudan that destroyed a weapons convoy in 2009 and a weapons factory in 2012.

Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram to stay connected