Sudan has received half of $3bn aid promised by Saudi Arabia and UAE

Sudan's protest leader Ahmad Rabie flashes the victory gesture alongside Gen.Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, the chief of Sudan's ruling Transitional Military Council during a ceremony where they signed a "constitutional declaration" in August. (AFP)
Updated 08 October 2019

Sudan has received half of $3bn aid promised by Saudi Arabia and UAE

  • Finance Minister Ibrahim Elbadawi said Saudi Arabia and the UAE had deposited $500 million in the Sudanese central bank
  • He was speaking on the sidelines of an event in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI: Sudan has received half of $3 billion in aid promised by Saudi Arabia and the UAE in April and expects the remainder to be paid by the end of next year, Sudan’s finance minister said late on Monday.
The Gulf countries agreed the aid package soon after former president Omar Al-Bashir was ousted, throwing a lifeline to Sudan’s new military leaders at the time.
Finance Minister Ibrahim Elbadawi said Saudi Arabia and the UAE had deposited $500 million in the Sudanese central bank, while $1 billion worth of petroleum products, wheat and agricultural production inputs had been received.
Long lines for bread and fuel are a recurring feature of Sudan’s economic crisis.
“I met with the ambassadors of the kingdom and of the UAE, and we agreed on a programmed schedule that will God willing take us to the end of 2020, to finish off the rest of the grant,” Elbadawi said.
He was speaking on the sidelines of an event in Abu Dhabi, where Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok is visiting after traveling to Riyadh earlier in the week.
Sudan’s new prime minister was accompanied on his visit to the Gulf by General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, head of the transitional sovereign council, and other senior officials.
Last month, Elbadawi announced a nine-month economic rescue plan aimed at curbing rampant inflation while ensuring supplies of basic goods, which would keep bread and petrol subsidies in place until at least June 2020.


Suspected arson at East Jerusalem mosque

Israeli border policemen take up position during clashes with Palestinian demonstrators at a protest against Trump's decision on Jerusalem, near Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank March 9, 2018. (REUTERS)
Updated 25 January 2020

Suspected arson at East Jerusalem mosque

  • The attack had the appearance of a “price tag” attack, a euphemism for Jewish nationalist-motivated hate crimes that generally target Palestinian or Arab Israeli property

JERUSALEM: Israeli police launched a manhunt on Friday after an apparent arson attack, accompanied by Hebrew-language graffiti, at a mosque in Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem.
“Police were summoned to a mosque in Beit Safafa, in Jerusalem, following a report of arson in one of the building’s rooms and spraying of graffiti on a nearby wall outside the building,” a police statement said.
“A wide-scale search is taking place in Jerusalem,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP. “We believe that the incident took place overnight. We are searching for suspects.”
The spokesman would not say if police viewed it as a hate crime. The graffiti, on a wall in the mosque compound and viewed by an AFP journalist, contained the name Kumi Ori, a small settlement outpost in the north of the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
The Times of Israel newspaper said on Friday that the wildcat outpost “is home to seven families along with roughly a dozen extremist Israeli teens.”
“Earlier this month security forces razed a pair of illegally built settler homes in the outpost,” it reported.
All settlements on occupied Palestinian land are considered illegal under international law, but Israel distinguishes between those it has approved and those it has not.
The paper said: “A number of young settlers living there were involved in a string of violent attacks on Palestinians and (Israeli) security forces.”
Police said that nobody was injured in the mosque incident.
The attack had the appearance of a “price tag” attack, a euphemism for Jewish nationalist-motivated hate crimes that generally target Palestinian or Arab Israeli property in revenge for nationalistic attacks against Israelis or Israeli government moves against unauthorized outposts like Kumi Ori.
“This is price tag,” Israeli Arab lawmaker Osama Saadi told AFP at the scene.
“The settlers didn’t only write words, they also burned the place and they burnt a Qur’an,” said Saadi, who lives in the area.
Ismail Awwad, the local mayor, said he called the police after he found apparent evidence of arson, pointing to an empty can he said had contained petrol or some other accelerant and scorch marks in the burned room.
“The fire in the mosque burned in many straight lines which is a sign that somebody poured inflammable material,” he said.
There was damage to an interior prayer room but the building’s structure was unharmed.
In December, more than 160 cars were vandalized in the Shuafaat neighborhood of east Jerusalem with anti-Arab slogans scrawled nearby.
The slogans read “Arabs=enemies,” “There is no room in the country for enemies” and “When Jews are stabbed we aren’t silent.”
The attackers were described by a local resident as “masked settlers.”