Following a secret meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sudan’s transitional leader General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, it appears that the two countries may be normalizing relations.
The meeting took place at the residence of Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni during a visit by Netanyahu that was ostensibly set out to strengthen Israeli-Ugandan relations.
If normalization does take place, it would be a massive reversal for the northeast African state. The country was for a long time known for being the place where the Khartoum Declaration (which called for “No peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with Israel”) was made.
For Netanyahu, this is simply one of the numerous attempts to better relations with several Middle Eastern and African states. In 2019, Israel re-established ties with Chad with the prime minister also openly visiting Oman the year before. Before that, Netanyahu expressed his desire for Israel to obtain observer status in the African Union. This is motivated by numerous causes including divorcing the Palestinian issues from its wider foreign policy as well as to isolate Iran. Until recently, Sudan was a major ally of Iran with the latter allegedly having also used Port Sudan to dock its ships. Additionally, the embattled Israeli premier is currently facing corruption charges at home and a foreign policy success could extend his political viability.