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UN renews Sudan sanctions despite Khartoum’s pleas

(FILE) The UN Security Council vote to impose sanctions on South Sudan’s warring factions at the UN in New York on March 3, 2015. The UN Security Council on Tuesday unanimously adopted a resolution to slap sanctions on South Sudan’s warring factions, ratcheting up the pressure as a deadline loomed to reach a peace deal. Drafted by the United States, the resolution sets up a sanctions committee which would submit to the council the names of those responsible for blocking peace efforts, and who should be punished with a global travel ban and assets freeze.  (Photo by Loey Felipe / UNITED NATIONS / AFP)

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(AFP) – The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday extended for one year long-standing sanctions on Sudan, ignoring pleas from Khartoum to lift the measures.

Sudan has repeatedly called for the world body to scrap the sanctions, and an arms embargo, imposed during conflict in the country’s restive Darfur region in 2005.

Last month, Russia’s top diplomat Sergei Lavrov pledged support for the African nation’s call.

But the 15-member Council voted to renew the mandate of the panel of experts tasked with monitoring and implementing the sanctions and embargo until March 12, 2024.

The vote was passed with 13 votes in favor. Moscow and Beijing abstained.

China’s deputy UN representative, Geng Shuang, said the sanctions were “outdated and should be lifted because things have improved on the ground.”

Ex-strongman Omar al-Bashir was ousted from power in Sudan in 2019, following popular protests, after three decades in power marked by international isolation and crippling US sanctions.

A short-lived transition to civilian rule followed and Washington delisted Sudan as a state sponsor of terror in December 2020, with $2 billion of international aid returning.

But the East African country has been gripped by deepening political and economic turmoil since a 2021 coup led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan derailed the transition to civilian rule and halted the aid flow.

© Agence France-Presse

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