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KHARTOUM - 31 Oct 2016

Sudan, Kenya sign deal on oil and mining, discuss withdrawal from ICC

Sudan and Kenya on Sunday evening held bilateral talks and signed a number of agreements to strengthen the two country’s cooperation in oil and mining sector.

President Omar al-Bashir and President Uhuru Kenyatta witnessed the signing of the two deals at the Presidential Palace in the capital Khartoum.

Before witnessing the signing of the two documents, President Kenyatta was taken on a tour of the Khartoum Refinery Company which refines petroleum and Sudan Gold Refinery.

President Kenyatta also toured Cofftea tea factory which import and does value addition to tea from Kenya. President Kenyatta was also briefed on Sudan’s National Dialogue process whose recommendations are yet to be implemented.

In joint press statements after the talks, the two leaders said Sudan and Kenya will continue engaging with each other as neighbours, saying the two nations shared a common border before South Sudan’s independent in 2011.

 “Kenya and Sudan are still neighbours despite the fact that there is a new country in between us,” said President Kenyatta.

Kenyatta praised the progress made by Sudan in the oil industry, beside the expansion of its infrastructure.

For his part, President Bashir thanked Kenya for the role it played in hosting the Naivasha peace talks that led to a peaceful resolution in Sudan. The peaceful agreement led to the establishment of South Sudan.

Discussion on the ICC

Separately, the two leaders also discussed matters pertaining to the International Criminal Court (ICC) which issued arrest warrants against al-Bashir and indicted President Kenyatta before dropping charges later, a Sudanese official said.

Sudan’s Minister of Information Ahmed Bilal Osman told Radio Tamazuj yesterday that President Bashir briefed his Kenyan counterpart on the steps that African countries should take to withdraw from the International Criminal Court, saying the Netherlands-based court is bias.

“The Kenyan President also came to consult on the steps called for by the Sudanese President on the withdrawal from the International Criminal Court, so we think that Kenya now wanted to withdraw like the other African Countries,” said Bilal.

In the conclusion of the joint talks, Sudan’s State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Kamal Ismail signed the joint communiqué for Sudan while the Kenyan Foreign Minister, Amina Mohammed signed for her country.

President Kenyatta yesterday evening departed from Khartoum International Airport for Nairobi after a two-day visit.