$7 million cash hoard found in home of Sudan’s ousted leader Omar Al-Bashir

Sudanese protesters protest outside the army complex in Khartoum on April 20, 2019. (AFP / OZAN KOSE)
Updated 21 April 2019
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$7 million cash hoard found in home of Sudan’s ousted leader Omar Al-Bashir

  • Raiders seize suitcases containing euros, US dollar and Sudanese pounds
  • Bashir was ousted by the military on April 11 after months of protests demanding an end to corruption

CAIRO: Sudan’s deposed leader Omar Al-Bashir faces trial for money laundering after a hoard of cash was found in his home in Khartoum.

Military intelligence officers who searched the former president’s house found suitcases containing 6 million euros, more than $351,000 in US bills, and 5 million Sudanese pounds — a total of more than $7 million.

He faces charges of money laundering and possession of large sums of foreign currency without legal grounds, a judicial source said. 

“The chief public prosecutor ... ordered the former president detained and quickly questioned in preparation to put him on trial,” the source said. “The public prosecution will question him in Kobar prison.”

Bashir was ousted by the military on April 11 after months of protests demanding an end to corruption. 

The country’s transitional military council last week ordered the central bank to review financial transfers since April 1 and to seize “suspect” funds. 

It also ordered the “suspension of the transfer of ownership of any shares until further notice and for any large or suspect transfers of shares or companies to be reported.”

A delegation from the Alliance for Freedom and Change, the umbrella group for protesters, held talks with the military council on Saturday about handing over power to a civilian administration.

If the military rulers refused to hand over power, the protest leaders will announce a “sovereign civilian council” on Sunday, said Ahmed Al-Rabia, a leading member of the Sudanese Professionals Association, the group that launched the initial protests.

“If they are willing to negotiate, then there is a chance that tomorrow’s announcement could be postponed,” he said. “What we want from them is a timetable to hand over power, so things don’t drag.”

Army chiefs had held two rounds of talks with the protest leaders since Bashir was removed, he said. “During these talks we’ve felt that the military council has no desire to hand over power.”

Officials from the African Union also held talks on Saturday with the military council.  

Gen. Omar Zain Al-Abidin, head of the council’s political committee, said the military council’s job was to provide a climate for political forces to rule Sudan in a peaceful and democratic way.  They discussed how the African Union could help in the transition.

The group has given Sudan two weeks to form a civilian administration or risk expulsion.

 


Turkey launches air strike on Iraqi Kurdistan after killing of diplomat

Updated 37 min 35 sec ago
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Turkey launches air strike on Iraqi Kurdistan after killing of diplomat

  • Turkish vice consul to Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region was shot dead Wednesday in the local capital Irbil
  • Turkish separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) is suspected to be involved in the killing

ANKARA: Turkey on Thursday launched an air attack on Iraqi Kurdistan in response to the killing of a Turkish diplomat in the region, the country’s defense minister said.
The Turkish vice consul to Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region was shot dead Wednesday in the local capital Irbil. Police sources said two other people were also killed.
There was no claim of responsibility for the shooting, but many Iraqi experts have pointed to the probability that the Turkish separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which Ankara considers a terrorist group, was behind the attack.
“Following the evil attack in Irbil, we have launched the most comprehensive air operation on Qandil and dealt a heavy blow to the (PKK) terror organization,” defense minister Hulusi Akar said in a statement.
Targets such as “armaments positions, lodgings, shelters and caves belonging to terrorists” were destroyed.
“Our fight against terror will continue with increasing determination until the last terrorist is neutralized and the blood of our martyrs will be avenged,” he added.
The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), which now leads the regional government, enjoys good political and trade relations with Turkey.
But Turkey has been conducting a ground offensive and bombing campaign since May in the mountainous northern region to root out the PKK which has waged an insurgency against the Turkish state since 1984.
Earlier this month, the PKK announced that one of those raids killed senior PKK leader Diyar Gharib Mohammed along with two other fighters.
A spokesman for the PKK’s armed branch denied the group was involved in Wednesday’s shooting.