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Asharq Al-Awsat
Asharq Al-Awsat
Khartoum - Ahmed Younis

Sudan's Hemedti Visits Moscow

The deputy head of Sudan's ruling council, General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo. Reuters

The deputy head of Sudan's ruling council, General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, who is widely known as Hemedti, was in Moscow on Thursday for talks with the Russian government.

The official visit comes at a testing time for both countries. Russia is facing new Western sanctions after ordering troops into eastern Ukraine, while the United States has threatened Sudan's military with sanctions after the coup.

"Through this visit, we hope to advance relations between Sudan and Russia to broader horizons, and strengthen the existing cooperation between us in various fields," Dagalo said in a tweet.

The Sudanese delegation's visit to Moscow fell "within the framework of exchanging views and discussing ways to develop and strengthen cooperation between Sudan and Russia," the ruling Sovereign Council said.

The delegation, which also includes Finance Minister Gibril Ibrahim as well as senior energy and trade officials, would hold a series of talks with Russian counterparts during the visit, it said in a statement.

Russia was due to send a shipment of wheat to Sudan as humanitarian aid, Sputnik News reported in January.

Military leader General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who visited Russia in 2019, said in December that relations with Russia were strong and that an agreement on a Russian naval base on the country's Red Sea coast was under discussion.

The visit is the latest in a string of diplomatic trips Hemedti has made this year, including to the United Arab Emirates, Ethiopia, and South Sudan.

Sudan has found itself increasingly isolated since an October 25 coup that has seen foreign aid cut as part of the international community's response to the military takeover.

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