On Thursday, a US official said the United States is preparing to lift decades-long economic sanctions against Sudan, citing improvement on human rights and progress on counter-terrorism.
The official speaking on condition of anonymity further said that President Donald Trump’s administration is expected to announce its decision today, Friday 6th October.
Shortly before leaving office, former US President Barack Obama temporarily eased penalties that had been in place for two decades against the African nation. In July, the Trump administration postponed for three months a decision on whether to remove the sanctions completely, setting up an October 12 deadline.
Lifting the sanctions, which is opposed by some human rights advocates, would suspend a trade embargo, unfreeze assets and remove financial restrictions that have hobbled the Sudanese economy.
It will also mark a major turnaround for the government of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who once played host to Osama bin Laden and is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of orchestrating genocide in Darfur.
Sudan will remain, for now, on the US list of state sponsors of terrorism, alongside Iran and Syria.
But the sanctions decision reflects a US assessment that Sudan has made progress in meeting Washington’s demands, including cooperation on counter-terrorism, working to resolve internal conflicts and allowing more humanitarian aid into Darfur and other rebellious border areas.
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