First Sudanese ambassador to the U.S. in more than two decades announced

WASHINGTON – Sudan appointed its first ambassador to the United States in decades in a move towards the normalization of relations between the two countries after decades of hostility.

Both the U.S. and Sudan want to strengthen their relations after the fall of dictator Omar al-Bashir during an uprising a year ago.

“We have chosen the astute diplomat Noureddine Satti as an ambassador to Washington and the U.S. authorities agreed to his nomination,” said the Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

For nearly a quarter of a century, the two countries had only appointed chargé d’affaires to manage their respective embassies.

In a statement made in December following an official visit to Washington by Sudanese Prime Minister Adalla Hamdok, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that, “The two countries will exchange ambassadors.”

The U.S. added Sudan to its list of state-sponsors of terrorism in 1993 in response to the former-dictator Al-Bashir’s support for Islamist militant groups. The listing made Sudan ineligible for debt relief and emergency financing from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB).

“The U.S. may exclude Sudan from the list of state-sponsors of terrorism. However, the U.S. Congress must endorse such a move,” a senior State Department official stated last year.