The head of Sudan’s Transitional Sovereignty Council said Monday that full normalization with Israel would not be implemented until a legislative council is formed. 

Speaking in an interview on state television, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan stressed that the deal was yet to be finalized and may be beneficial for the country as it grapples with a severe economic crisis.

“Let me call it reconciliation instead of normalization and let me also confirm that we didn’t face any kind of blackmailing to normalize with Israel. But we all know that normalization with Israel is something that is motivated by the American administration and we have the right to normalize [ties] with Israel like other countries in the region,” he said.

“We have been isolated from the world because of sanctions and because of the [state sponsors of] terrorism list and the Sudanese nation has suffered a lot from this, so we were looking out for our interests.”

Al-Burhan further noted that the decision on normalization has been accepted by the majority of political parties in the country.

He also stressed that Sudan still supports a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians and is committed to the resolutions of the Arab summits and Arab League in this regard.

Sudan decided to normalize relations with Israel after US President Donald Trump issued an executive order Friday to remove the northeast African country from the US list of state sponsors of terrorism. The agreement was announced in a call with Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Al-Burhan heads the military-civilian council, which took control following the ouster by the military in April 2019 of President Omar al-Bashir following mass protests.

In December, al-Bashir, who ruled Sudan since 1989, was sentenced to two years in prison for corruption. He is also facing charges of undermining the constitution over the 1989 military coup he led.

Sudan’s transitional government agreed in February to hand over al-Bashir to the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes in Darfur.

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