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Sudanese-Kuwaiti Relations have Long been Established and Distinguished in Different Fields: Al-Qabandi

Kuwaiti Ambassador to Khartoum Bassam Mohammed Al-Qabandi was interviewed by Safe Ali Mansour of the SMC

Q: Let us begin by describing the Sudanese-Kuwaiti relations at this phase?

A: The Sudanese-Kuwaiti relations have long been established and are distinguished relations in the field of political relations and coordination between the positions in the Arab League and the United Nations. This is in addition to the economic and humanitarian relations between the two countries.

 

Q: Recently, the President of the Republic visited the State of Kuwait. What the visit aimed to?

A: The visit of President Omar Al Bashir to Kuwait is very important to the two countries because the two sides held intensive contacts and it was very successful despite it being a short visit. There have been visits to attend different conferences, and such visits are activating relations between the two countries.

There is an understanding and sincere intention between the parties. The visit of the president found great satisfaction and acceptance by the Emir and the Kuwaiti government, because it culminated in many discussions not only in the field of relations between the two countries, but also throughout the Arab world because it is going through many problems, especially Palestine, Syria, Iraq and Yemen.

 

Q: What is the role of the Joint Ministerial Committee in developing relations between Sudan and Kuwait?

A: The Joint Ministerial Committee exists and ongoing, and its most recent meetings were held in Kuwait. It is scheduled to hold its next meetings in November in Khartoum to discuss a number of issues of common concern.

It is known that the ministerial committee includes all the important bodies of the two countries, both the Ministry of Social Affairs, Justice, Interior and Defense. The Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), the Kuwait Fund For Arab Economic Development (KFAED), this committee concern with the relationship between the two countries, and that reaffirms the importance of the relationship between Kuwait and Sudan, which is historic.

 

Q: What are the opportunities for cooperation between Sudan and Kuwait now and in the future, and in what areas?

A: Cooperation between Kuwait and Sudan is ongoing and didn’t stop; especially Kuwait has investments in Sudan. I can say that these relations have evolved; much is talked about the sugar of Kenana as a development project and as an example of cooperation between the Arab countries in general, because it is a successful and developed project resulted other projects.

 

Q: Can you tell us about these projects?

A: We can say there are farms for cows and others for fruits, other plants and flowers. And there are many projects resulted from this huge and model project, and we in Sudan and Kuwait very proud of the sugar Kenana project.

 

Q: What are the other Kuwaiti investment areas in Sudan?

A. We are one of the first countries to come to invest in Sudan in development projects. We have investments in a number of areas such as hotels.

 

Q: What about military cooperation between the two countries?

A. We have cooperation in the military field between Kuwait and Sudan. There have been a number of important meetings and agreements between the two sides.

Sudan helped us to establish a military college in Kuwait, and it is founded by the Sudanese.

We can say that the level of military cooperation between the two countries is very high. We have more than 182 student officers in the Sudanese military academy in the batch 63, and now we have 36 officers in the military academy also participated in the General Staff in Khartoum.

I pointed out the visit the chief of staff Kuwaiti Mohammed al-Khader to Sudan, during which he met with his Sudanese counterpart. We also expect the visit of the Sudanese Chief of Staff Imad Adawi to Kuwait soon.

 

Q: Can we shed light on Kuwait’s humanitarian work?

A: There is a lot of ongoing cooperation between Kuwait and Sudan. We are proud of what Ali Mistos humanitarian and charity work Last week we sent a convoy of humanitarian aid to the sisters in South Sudan. Brothers in Sudan provide assistance to over 1.5 million refugees in Sudan. Kuwait exists and extended aid, which is considered the second jump all these came from the good people of the International Islamic Charitable Commission and to forget that we have a ‘Prince of humanity’ in Kuwait, is the one who pays this work in all its aspects in the Sudan or other countries.

 

Q: How does Kuwait consider the participation of Sudan in the ‘Decisive Storm’?

A: This is a normal role for Sudan I do not know why the surprise of Sudan’s entry into this alliance Sudan is a Muslim and Arab country and a neighbor that has alliances with the GCC and Arab countries. The threats are directed not only at Saudi Arabia but also at the Arab homeland in general. Those who started the threats in Yemen are the Houthis to reach the border and introduce them to some missiles. Therefore, Saudi Arabia became the headquarters of this alliance to respond to the Houthi aggression led by Ali Abdullah Saleh.

 

Q: Is the atmosphere ready for more Kuwaiti investments in Sudan, especially after lifting economic sanctions?

A: Kuwaiti investments are really there, but they need solid ground Sudan has been under siege and harsh sanctions for many years. As you know, some of these sanctions have been lifted. In July, it is hoped that these sanctions will be lifted completely. It is assumed that everyone, whether investor or host country investors, to lay solid ground until the investor comes and is comfortable. Opportunities are really big in Sudan, it is a fertile country for investments and a country that needs a lot of work to get back on its feet.

 

Q: What are your readings of the political developments inside Sudan?

A. President Omar Hassan Al Bashir is a wise man the most important thing to do is that Sudan has bridged differences with neighboring countries, especially border disputes. He distanced himself from these differences until his country was established Al Bashir came to the national dialogue and sat with them and sent many messages in his speeches.

 

Q: What are your impressions of the situation in Sudan through your stay in it?

A: Sudan is a safe country the man walking in the streets of Khartoum is not exposed to dangers, there are other small countries but there is a danger. Today Khartoum lives in safety, and we hope to settle on that situation when it loses security, it loses everything, even if it applies to the richest country in the world. We have many examples; this Syria today unfortunately ended because of differences and conflicts in a rich country there is also Venezuela, a very rich country that now needs only Manna because it is missing, even though it has oil, money and strategic location. I think there is a media shortcoming towards Sudan that might be intentional or unintentional, portraying Sudan as an insecure country and this is not true. We live in Sudan, with our families, we have full security, we feel threatened from any side, and the country is normal and peaceful.

 

Q: What is your assessment of the projects implemented after the donor conference for eastern Sudan hosted by your country?

A: The donor conference was held in 2010 in Kuwait and estimated amounts were allocated from Kuwait to the reconstruction of the East. Sudan is also a party; Mr. President was interested in pumping huge sums. Therefore, East Maar projects stand on solid ground in the states of Kassel, Geared and the Red Sea these states have been built projects including hospitals, schools and dams so it has become almost stable. Now it has become a destination for many investors who felt there. The investor needs the ground through which he works through the presence of infrastructure. We are really proud of projects in eastern Sudan and we hope that it will be better than it is. As you know, it takes years of work, just time.

 

Q: The Kuwaiti Fund for Development started in the sixties of the last century and continues to work, he told us about the most important projects he did?

A: Kuwait Fund has implemented many projects in Sudan, and we are among the first to come to Sudan through projects through the Fund? This is the testimony of His Excellency the Sudanese President when he said this fund is Sudanese and not Kuwaiti, and it was the beginning of the implementation of Sudan railway projects plans.

As for the projects of dams we have the projects of Said Atbara and Stat. They were opened earlier this year in the presence of the President of the Republic, and there are also promises to build dams and other large projects, but you need more patience especially with the lack of all the required capabilities. We assure you that the Kuwaiti Fund continues to help Sudan.

I would like to point out to you that the Sudan has received a wise president who is looking for the interests of the state he is seeking. He met with the Kuwaiti delegation who recently visited Sudan, where he negotiated with them to find solutions for the continuation and development of these projects in Sudan.

 

Q: Would you like to add anything?

A: I am grateful for the opportunity to give Sudanese readers a chance to learn about some of Kuwait’s projects in Sudan. We traveled with President Omar Ahmed Al Bashir and witnessed the opening of Said Atbara and SIXT. This is a huge project. We are proud of what we have seen.

(SMC)

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