President Trump announced Friday that Sudan will recognize Israel and begin to normalize relations with the Jewish state, part of a series of agreements with Arab nations that were previously hostile toward Israel.
The announcement comes just after Trump said he has informed Congress of his plan to remove Sudan from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism provided the Arab nation pays $335 million to American terror victims and their families. That money is meant as reparations for al-Qaida’s bombings in 1998 of the U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. Al-Qaida’s founder and leader Osama bin Laden was residing in Sudan at the time.
The U.S. has also overseen agreements between Israel and two other Arab states, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. The last Middle Eastern country to recognize Israel before this year’s peace agreements was Jordan in the 1990s.
The move marks a definitive shift in Sudan’s longstanding policy of hostility to Israel over Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians. In 1967, eight Arab heads of state met in Sudan’s capital and agreed to the Khartoum Resolution, which outlined the so-called “three no’s,” no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, and no negotiations with Israel.
Trump promised Friday that there “would be many more peace deals to come in the Middle East,” including possibly even the Palestinians.
“We have many lined up. They want to come in, get the deal done,” the president said.
“Three months ago no one thought this was possible. Even Bibi didn’t know if this was possible,” Trump said, referring to Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.