September 24, 2021 (WASHINGTON) – The White House voiced strong support on Friday for the “civilian-led” transition in Sudan and announced that President Biden plans to invite Prime Minister Hamdok to visit Washington.
The failed coup by Islamist officers in the army and the challenges posed military to the civilian efforts to carry out reforms have forced the Biden administration to loudly express its support to the civilian forces in Sudan.
In a statement on Friday, the White House said that National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan spoke by phone on September 24 with Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok.
The White House reiterated its support to the civilian-led transition to democracy in Sudan adding they oppose any attempts to derail or disrupt the will of the Sudanese people.
“Sullivan underscored that any attempt by military actors to undermine the spirit and agreed benchmarks of Sudan’s constitutional declaration would have significant consequences for the U.S.-Sudan bilateral relationship and planned assistance,” warned the statement.
The White House added that U.S. Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman will travel to Sudan next week to reaffirm U.S. support for the civilian-led transition and discuss regional security challenges alluding to the border dispute with Ethiopia.
The statement that Sullivan informed Hamdok that President Biden looks forward to “meeting with Prime Minister Hamdok in the near future”.
The Sudanese military component had succeeded to forge good relations with the Trump administration. However, the Biden administration did not show enthusiasm for such kind of relationship.
U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member, Senator Jim Risch warned against attempts by elements of the Sudanese military or former Bashir regime to remove the civilian-led transitional government by force or undermine civilian leadership.
Such efforts “will jeopardize the U.S. bilateral relationship, debt relief, over $1B in pledged US assistance & international goodwill toward Sudan’s future,” he stressed.
After the ouster of the al-Bashir regime, the United States removed Sudan from its list of state sponsors of terrorism and supported the transition and mobilized the international community to back the Hamdok government.
In March 2020, US Congress passed a bill requiring the Department of State to submit a strategy outlining U.S. support for a transition to the civilian-led government in Sudan. Also, the act authorises some measures to assist the transition and reform its security sector.