Sudanese, Ugandan leaders hold business, security talks

Sudanese, Ugandan leaders hold business, security talks

Uganda's diplomatic ties with Sudan once were frosty, but relations improved after South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in 2011.

A communique issued late on Monday after talks between Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni and Sudan's President Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir who was visiting the East African country, said the direct flights would "promote trade, tourism and investment" between both countries.

The two leaders, during Monday's meeting, also discussed cooperation between the two countries and reportedly agreed to organize an investment forum to be convened in Sudan's capital, Khartoum.

President Museveni and President Bashir have continuously discussed the Economic Development and Peace Development and bilateral relations between their two countries, and ahead of this visit.

Particularly, Uganda will increase its coffee and tea exports to the Sudan.

The meetings between the two presidents will, therefore, help the two sides iron out the pending issues.

The presidents also reviewed the implementation of the decisions made during President Museveni's official visit to Sudan in September 2015 as well as the 5th Joint Ministerial Commission. Uganda will be hosting the 6th Session of the Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) by March 2018.

They are seeking opportunities for trade, investment and business partnerships with their Ugandan counterpart.

However, there will be calls from the worldwide criminal court, for Uganda a signatory of the Rome statutes that established the court, to arrest President Omar El Bashir who was indicted on multiple counts of genocide during the Darfur war.

Uganda is not planning to arrest al-Bashir, in spite being a signatory to the Rome Statute that established the ICC, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni's press secretary Don Wannyama said.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir waves to the crowd during his visit to the Northern Kordofan town of El-Obeid to address a rally of freshly-trained paramilitary troops on April 19, 2012.

Upon learning of Bashir's visit to Uganda, several human rights groups called for the arrest of the Sudanese leader, in power since 1989.