The United States and Sudan on Wednesday agreed to exchange ambassadors once again after a gap of 23 years, in the latest sign of warming relations between the two countries.
"Today, we are pleased to announce that the United States and Sudan have decided to initiate the process of exchanging ambassadors after a 23-year gap," the State Department said while stressing that the decision was "a meaningful step" in strengthening the US-Sudan bilateral relationship, particularly as the civilian-led transitional government worked to implement the vast reforms under the political agreement and constitutional declaration of August 17.
"We look forward to working with the Senate to confirm an ambassador to Sudan," the Department added.
Relations between Washington and Khartoum have improved since the overthrow of then-President Omar al-Bashir in April, this year, and the formation of a civilian transitional government in August.
The announcement of exchanging ambassadors between the two countries came during Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok's maiden visit to Washington on Wednesday.
Since his appointment on August 21, Hamdok has led Sudan's transitional government, installed a civilian cabinet, and made key personnel changes to break with the policies and practices of the previous regime, the State Department.
The Prime Minister now hopes to secure Sudan's removal from the US "state sponsor of terrorism blacklist," on which Sudan has been listed for more than 25 years.
Further lauding his commitments, the Department added that Hamdok has "committed to engaging in peace negotiations" with the armed opposition groups in the north African country, established a commission of inquiry to investigate violence against protestors, and "committed to holding democratic elections at the end of the 39-month transition period."
After his arrival in D.C., the prime minister held talks with Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale who expressed unwavering support for Sudan's democratic transition.
The US had closed its embassy in Khartoum in 1996, citing terrorism concerns.
The US reopened the embassy in 2002, but it has been led by a charge d'affaires instead of an ambassador who has been confirmed by the Senate.
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