U.S. lifting sanctions on Sudan after two decades of embargo

Women and children line up for water at a refugee camp in South Sudan on 31 October 2012

Sudan has hailed the lifting of sanction and said it is a positive decision.

Sudan has been under significant American economic and military sanctions since the Clinton administration issued Executive Order 13067 in 1997 in response to human rights violations stemming from the South Sudan conflict.

In a move that completes a process begun by former President Barack Obama at the end of his tenure and which was opposed by human rights groups, President Donald Trump removed a US trade embargo and other penalties that had effectively cut Sudan off from much of the global financial system.

Sudan also has recently distanced itself diplomatically from Iran, another USA arch-foe.

Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir addresses the crowd during a campaign rally in East Darfur, April 5, 2016.

She said the move recognised Sudan's "sustained positive actions" but more progress was needed.

Nauert further explained, "This action came about through a focused, 16-month diplomatic effort to make progress with Sudan in these key areas".

Osama bin Laden, the slain Al-Qaeda founder, lived in Sudan between 1992 and 1996.

Explaining the end of the sanctions, United States officials said the authoritarian regime had maintained a cessation of hostilities in Darfur and other old flashpoints.

Officials also said they asked for and got a commitment from Sudan not to purchase arms from Pyongyang.

Egyptian Foreign Ministry welcomed on Saturday a US decision to end 20-year trade embargo against Sudan, the ministry said in a statement.

Bob Goodlatte noted Sudan's "historical support of worldwide terrorism" and argued the USA must first secure commitments that American victims and their families will be compensated.

Last month, the US administration removed Sudan from the list of countries whose citizens are subject to travel restrictions. Shortly before leaving office in January 2017, former President Barack Obama initiated a partial lifting of sanctions on Sudan. According to the United Nations, since 2003 when ethnic groups rebelled against the government at least 300,000 people have been killed and over 2.5 million have been displaced.

A Reuters report said that President Donald Trump's administration is expected to announce its decision as early as Friday, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Washington layered on more sanctions in 2006 for what it said was complicity in the violence in Sudan's Darfur region.

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