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SudanTribune.com: Sudan urges Eritrea to activate its role in East Africa Force

Posted by: Berhane.Habtemariam59@web.de

Date: Tuesday, 18 December 2018

 
Defence Minister Awad Ibn Ouf greets Sudanese troops stationed in Saudi Arabia on 29 Nov 2017 (ST photo)

December 18, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Defence Minister Awad Ibn Ouf has called on Eritrea to activate its membership at the army’s Chiefs-of-Staff body of the East African Standby Force (ESAF).

Speaking to the ESAF meeting on Sunday in Khartoum, Ibn Ouf praised the recent rapprochement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, saying it contributes to enhancing security and stability in the region.

Also, he renewed Sudan’s keenness to sustain security and stability in East Africa and the continent in general, pointing to the various challenges facing the region.

The Sudanese Defence Minister further praised the role played by the ESAF during the previous years, saying it has become the first force in Africa ready to carry out any mission in the region.

The call of the Sudanese military official come days after a meeting in Riyadh of seven countries bordering the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Djibouti, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen and Jordan to discuss a Saudi initiative to establish a regional alliance for the Red Sea countries.

However, it was noticed that Eritrea, which has several islands in the Red Sea and a mainland coastline of 1,150-kilometres, was absent from the meeting.

Relations between Sudan and Eritrea are strained since last January following accusations by Khartoum that Asmara was behind preparations of attacks in Kassala State by rebel groups. But Asmara denied the allegations.

The ESAF experts on Thursday have started a three-day meeting in Khartoum.

EASF is one of the five continent’s regional multidimensional force capabilities including military, police and civilian components consisting of 10 east African countries.

The regional organization is mandated to enhance peace and security in the volatile east African region.

The regional force was established following decisions made by the AU summit held in Ethiopia in 2004.

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Sudan frees 237 human trafficking victims during last 9 months


An image from a video footage by Sudan TV shows Sudanese and foreign illegal migrants arrested by the RSF in a remote area of North Darfur heading to Libya on 8 September 2018 (ST photo)
December 18, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) in coordination with the police and military intelligence have freed 237 victims of human trafficking between April and December, said well-informed security sources

The semi-official Sudan Media Center quoted the sources as saying a joint force from the NISS and the police last month freed 84 victims including 51 women and 33 men in Kassala State.

The same sources said another joint force from the NISS and military intelligence has freed 66 victims including 8 women and 7 children in North Darfur who were heading to Libya last April.

Also, the sources pointed out that 57 victims have been freed this month at East Nile locality, east of Khartoum, saying the combat operations would continue during the next period.

Sudan is considered a country of origin and transit for illegal migration and human trafficking. Thousands of people from Eritrea and Ethiopia are monthly crossing the border into the Sudanese territories on their way to Europe through Libya or Egypt.

Last July, the Higher Committee to Combat Human Trafficking said it would develop a national anti-trafficking strategy as well as activating existing laws to counter the phenomenon in accordance with the established international standards.

In January 2014, the Sudanese parliament approved an anti-human trafficking law which punishes those involved with human trafficking with up to 20 years imprisonment.

Also, in 2014, Khartoum hosted a conference on human trafficking in the Horn of Africa, organised by the African Union (AU), the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Sudanese government.

The East African nation has also forged a strategic partnership with several European countries and the EU to combat illegal migration and human trafficking.

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Sudanese army conducts largest-ever military drills on Red Sea


Sudanese soldiers during joint military exercises dubbed Knights Challenge in Almaaqil area in the River Nile State on 6 December 2016 (ST Photo)
December 18, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese army said it would conduct its largest military exercise on the Red Sea coast with the participation of the major land, sea and air forces.

Sudan Armed Forces’ (SAF) Chief of General Staff Kamal Abdel-Marouf has checked on the completion of arrangements to conclude the military exercise dubbed “Nusrat Al-Haq” (defending the truth) at Fijab area on the Red Sea coast.

The closing ceremony of the manoeuvres on Wednesday will be attended by President Omer al-Bashir and a number of foreign guests.

During a visit of Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi to Khartoum last July, the two countries agreed to coordinate efforts to enhance the security of the Red Sea.

Also, Sudan last week participated in a meeting of countries bordering the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden in Riyadh. The meeting discussed a Saudi initiative to establish an entity of cooperation among these nations.

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