JERUSALEM: Israel sent a delegation to Sudan on Monday, the first since the declaration last month of the normalisation of ties between the two countries, said a senior Israeli official.
There have been reports in Jerusalem for days that a delegation will visit Khartoum following the deal signed on 23 October by US President Donald Trump.
On Monday, Israeli army radio announced that the trip was underway.
The claim was confirmed by the Israeli official but refused to say who was in the delegation.
Tel Aviv gives $5m worth of wheat to ‘new friend’
Sudan, after the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, was the third Arab country this year to declare an agreement with Israel. The pact between Israel and Sudan has yet to be officially signed.
Although Israel hailed the agreements as historic diplomatic agreements, they were condemned by the Palestinians and urged Arab states to stay strong until Israel ceases its colonisation of Palestinian territories and decides to create a Palestinian state.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the president of Sudan’s ruling Sovereign Council, in Uganda in February.
On the first official direct flight from Tel Aviv to Khartoum, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo travelled in August.
The standardisation deal came a year after the collapse of the regime of President Omar al-Bashir, just as the transitional authorities in Khartoum were joining the United States.
Sudan later deposited $335 million in a special account to pay survivors and families of victims of the 1998 bombing of Al Qaeda’s US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
More than 200 people were killed by the bombings, which Bashir welcomed.
Trump officially moved to de-list Sudan as a state sponsor of terrorism after the money was deposited.
On Nov 2, Pompeo said that as the new Khartoum government seeks peace with former rebels, the U.S. will aim to end UN sanctions on Sudan over the war in Darfur.
The promise was another indication that, despite having agreed to recognise Israel, the United States is willing to reward Sudan. Since the departure of autocrat Bashir in April 2019, Sudan has embarked on a rocky transformation under a hybrid civilian-military government, turning the page as a foreign pariah over decades.
Read Also: UK announces end to lockdown
It has suffered, however with serious economic troubles, including a strong weakening of the Sudanese pound and rising consumer prices.
Two days after the normalisation decision, Netanyahu’s office said that Israel was sending Sudan $5 million worth of wheat.
We look forward to warm peace and are instantly sending $5 million worth of wheat to our new Sudanese mates,” Netanyahu’s office said on Twitter.”