By: Ahmed Alhaj (Site Admin)
Khartoum, Feb 2 (Sudanow)- The visiting US Deputy Secretary of the State, James Steinberg, on Wednesday, met with senior government officials, including the Presidential Assistant, the Foreign Minister, and presidential advisor on Security and Vice President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha, and reviewed with them bilateral relations and the latest developments in the Sudan.
The meeting focussed on the latest developments in the country in light of the outcome of the referendum in the Sudan and steps taken to implement the Comprehensive Peace Agreement CPA, the foreign Minister Ali Ahmed Karti said in statement following the meeting.
The Assistant of the President Dr Nafie Ali Nafie said the visit of this high level American official “reflects a clear sign of the improvement of the relations with the United States of America.” according to the Sudan News Agency (SUNA).
The American official on his side has said his country was pleased with the developments in the Sudan and the process of the implementation of the Comprehensive peace agreement.
“I reiterated what many of my senior officials have said which is the enormous appreciation for the leadership that has been shown here in moving forward with the referendum that is enormously successful and peaceful and open process” Steinberg said following his meeting with government officials on Wednesday.
“This is a very important step in building the relationship” with the United States of America, the US official said, adding that both the US Secretary of the State and President Obama have stressed that this was an opportunity to move down the path for “stronger and more positive relations between the two countries and moving step by step and deepen our ties and to work together in common challenges that we face.”
He said his discussions with government officials included the question of Abyei and Darfur and how important it is to take step to facilitate humanitarian access and improve security and reach a peaceful solution for the question.
He said he was encouraged by the government commitments in those areas discussed, pointing out that his country looks for a better relations with the Sudan as the process of the implementation of the CPA moves forwards.
“Our hope is to see a prosperous future for Sudan and how we could work together to create economic opportunities for properties for citizens here.” Steinberg said
He stressed that he has come out of the these discussions “encouraged by positive spirit that the foreign minister and the officials here have shown and the strong commitment we have to work together...to move down this path and out continue engagement toward even a stronger future”
The American administration has repeatedly stressed that carrying out the referendum successfully and accepting the results would be an advance step towards the normalization of relations with the Sudan. It is also expected to help the administration remove the Sudan from the list of countries it considered sponsors of terrorism.
Earlier in the day the Southern Sudan referendum commission SSRC announced the overall results of the referendum including northern Sudan and the diasporas, with 98.93 % voting for separation and 1.17% voting for unity. If no complaints or injections were raised, the commission will announced those results final and conclusive on the 7th of February. If any complaints or injections were raised the final and conclusive official results would be announced the 15th of February.
“we have made it very clear that as the results are certified and accepted here ....steps will be taken for normalization including our dealing with states sponsor of terrorism as well as depending our diplomatic ties “the American official who will fly to Juba, southern Sudan for a meeting with the First Vice President of the Republic, Gen Salva Kiir Mayardit, said.
Sudan’s foreign Minister Ali Karti said hoped that this time the Americans would couple words with deeds, hinting to previous promises that went unmet.
“We hope this time they would comply with these promises” the foreign minister karti said.
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