11:18 09.06.2018(updated at 13:12 09.06.2018)
KHARTOUM (Sputnik) - Russia and Sudan are negotiating the possibility of installing a logistics center for Russian warships in the Red Sea on Sudanese territory, Russian ambassador to Khartoum Vladimir Zheltov told Sputnik.
"The proposal is being studied by the competent bodies of Russia and Sudan, when they finish their work, an announcement will be made through the official channels," Zheltov said.
The ambassador clarified that "the construction of a naval base is not being debated, but rather a logistics center for Russian warships in the Red Sea".
The diplomat did not offer details claiming that it is a confidential matter.
The president of Sudan, Omar Bashir, told Sputnik last November, during his first visit to Russia, to have discussed with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, and with the Russian Defense Minister, Sergei Shoigú, the possibility of establishing a naval base on the coast of the Red Sea.
The Sudanese coast of the Red Sea extends for about 750 kilometers, between 18 degrees north latitude on the border with Eritrea at 22 degrees on the border with Egypt.
Also, the Russian ambassador stressed that Russia and Sudan are taking the first steps towards cooperation in the field of nuclear energy.
"We are taking the first steps and we need more time to elaborate a vision of our cooperation in atomic energy", said the diplomat when answering the question of whether Russia will build a nuclear plant in Sudan.
Zheltov commented that cooperation with Sudan is not limited to the nuclear power plant project alone and that cooperation is also being considered in sectors such as public health.
According to the ambassador, after signing the framework agreement on cooperation between Russia and Sudan last year, it is necessary to carry out the respective investigations.
"We are just beginning," the Russian diplomat reiterated.
During the celebration of the International Forum Atomexpo 2017 in June of last year in Moscow, the Russian state corporation Rosatom signed a memorandum of understanding with the atomic energy authority of Sudan.
Later, in November 2017, during the Sochi visit to the Sudanese president an intergovernmental agreement was signed and then in December, Rosatom closed
with Sudan an agreement on the development of the nuclear power plant project.