Israel and Sudan reach U.S.-brokered deal to normalize ties

Israel and Sudan agreed on Friday to take steps to normalize relations in a deal brokered with the help of the United States, making Khartoum the third Arab government to set aside hostilities with Israel in the last two months.

U.S. President Donald Trump, seeking re-election on Nov. 3, sealed the agreement in a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and Transitional Council Head Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, senior U.S. officials said.

Trump’s decision earlier this week to remove Sudan from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism paved the way for the deal with Israel, marking a foreign policy achievement for the Republican president as he seeks a second term trailing in opinion polls behind Democratic rival Joe Biden.

“The leaders agreed to the normalization of relations between Sudan and Israel and to end the state of belligerence between their nations,” according to a joint statement issued by the three countries.

Israel and Sudan plan to begin by opening economic and trade relations, with an initial focus on agriculture, the joint statement said. A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said such issues as formal establishment of diplomatic ties would be resolved later. (Reuters)

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