Nkosazana hails lift­ing of US Su­dan sanc­tions

The Star Early Edition - - WORLD - MEL FRYKBERG

THE OUT­GO­ING chair­woman of the African Union Com­mis­sion, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, has wel­comed the lift­ing of eco­nomic sanc­tions by the US on Su­dan.

She said the move al­lowed Su­dan to re-en­gage in in­ter­na­tional trade and end the suf­fer­ing of its peo­ple.

She said she ap­pre­ci­ated US Pres­i­dent Barack Obama for this con­struc­tive de­ci­sion and hoped that the in­com­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion would con­sider per­ma­nent re­vo­ca­tion of the sanc­tions and fur­ther work to­wards grant­ing debt re­lief to Su­dan to en­able it to be­gin a new chap­ter of eco­nomic re­con­struc­tion and pros­per­ity.

She also en­cour­aged the Su­danese gov­ern­ment and the armed move­ments to re­turn to the ne­go­ti­a­tion ta­ble as a mat­ter of ur­gency with a more con­cil­ia­tory ap­proach to­wards re­solv­ing their dif­fer­ences.

She urged all par­ties to co-op­er­ate fully with the ef­forts of the AU High Level Im­ple­men­ta­tion Panel to reach a Ces­sa­tion of Hos­til­i­ties Agree­ment and a per­ma­nent cease­fire and par­tic­i­pate in an in­clu­sive po­lit­i­cal process, which would guar­an­tee the Su­danese peo­ple long-awaited peace.

The US State De­part­ment said the ac­tions to lift sanc­tions on Su­dan were the cul­mi­na­tion of months of in­ten­sive bi­lat­eral en­gage­ment with Khar­toum.

The US and Su­dan have com­mit­ted to fo­cus­ing on achiev­ing progress in five key ar­eas: ceas­ing hos­til­i­ties in Dar­fur and the Two Ar­eas (Su­dan’s Blue Nile and South Kord­o­fan states), im­prov­ing hu­man­i­tar­ian ac­cess, end­ing neg­a­tive in­ter­fer­ence in South Su­dan, en­hanc­ing co-op­er­a­tion on counter-ter­ror­ism, and ad­dress­ing the threat of the Lord’s Re­sis­tance Army (LRA).

“Over a six-month pe­riod (since June 2016), Su­dan made sig­nif­i­cant progress in each of these ar­eas,” said the State De­part­ment.

“Our fre­quent and ro­bust en­gage­ment over this pe­riod gave us a fo­rum to rou­tinely ad­dress these is­sues, build new ar­eas of co-op­er­a­tion, and use the in­cen­tive of sanc­tions re­lief as lever­age to en­cour­age Su­dan to take pos­i­tive steps like ceas­ing hos­til­i­ties and com­mit­ting to pro­vid­ing ac­cess for hu­man­i­tar­ian re­lief to reach peo­ple in need of as­sis­tance. But we recog­nise a lot more work needs to be done.”

Dur­ing the next six months, Amer­i­cans will be au­tho­rised by the US Trea­sury to trade with Su­dan and to en­gage in trans­ac­tions in­volv­ing prop­erty in which the gov­ern­ment of Su­dan has an in­ter­est.

If the con­di­tions in the Ex­ec­u­tive Or­der is­sued by the US are met and the sanc­tions are per­ma­nently re­voked in 180 days, fu­ture trade would not re­quire US Trea­sury ap­proval.

Mov­ing for­ward, the US will have ad­di­tional tools to con­tinue con­struc­tive en­gage­ment and ap­ply pres­sure as nec­es­sary, in sup­port of fur­ther progress in the five key ar­eas, as well as on im­prov­ing hu­man rights, open­ing po­lit­i­cal space, and ad­dress­ing the root causes of con­flict in Su­dan. ANA

PIC­TURE: REUTERS

A Su­danese army tank in Dal­dako, South Kord­o­fan, which is one of the ar­eas where Khar­toum has promised to seek to cease hos­til­i­ties.

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