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NEWS & VIEWS
SUDAN-INDIA FOREIGN OFFICE CONSULTATIONS NEW DELHI, 10-12TH FEBRUARY, 2005

February 11, 2005

PRESS RELEASE

1. The 4th Session of the India-Sudan Foreign Office consultations was held in New Delhi, India, during 10-12th February, 205, on the eve of golden Jubilee year and 50th Anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Sudan and India. The Indian side was headed by H.E. Shri Rajiv Sikri, Secretary-East, Ministry of External Affairs, while the Sudanese side was led by H.E. Mr. Awad Al Karim Fadlalla, Advisor to the Minister of foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Sudan.

2. The Consultations were conducted in a spirit of brotherhood and solidarity and were guided by the determination and commitment of the two countries to enhance and consolidate their bilateral relations in all fields.

3. At the bilateral level, the two delegations reviewed the current status of their relations since the holding of the Joint Ministerial commission in Khartoum during April, 2000, including the level of implementation of the bilateral projects as well as the outcome of the various agreements and MoUs signed between them. In this connection the two sides expressed satisfaction over the progress realized and reinforced by the recent visit to Sudan by H.E. the President of the republic of India, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, and hailed the expansion of their bilateral relations, especially in the hydrocarbon sector, while pledging to consolidate and further strengthen ties and relations in al economic, investment, trade, cultural, scientific and technological domains. To that end, the two sides expressed their conviction that the forthcoming meeting in New Delhi of the Joint Ministerial Commission would greatly enhance and advance their bilateral cooperation in all such fields and endeavours.

4. The Sudanese side briefed its Indian counterpart on the landmark achievement of the Peace Accord signed in the Sudan and on-going efforts to ensure peace stability and development throughout the country. The Sudanese side expressed its appreciation for India's participation, at ministerial level, in the signing ceremony, and welcomed India's involvement in the post-conflict challenges of rehabilitation and reconstruction. The Sudanese side commended India's principled commitment to Sudan's unity, territorial integrity, stability and prosperity. The Indian delegation welcomed the request forwarded by the Sudan Government for membership as dialogue partner in the Indian Ocean Rim Organization, and agreed to assist Sudan in the process towards its accession to the WTO.

5. On regional issues, the two sides reviewed the situation in Africa and underscored the imperative for peace and development in the continent. The Indian side briefed its Sudanese counterpart on the various economic initiatives undertaken by the Government of Indian within the context of the historical ties between India and Africa. Both sides expressed the confidence that the proposed African Union-India dialogue would further enhance and consolidate those historical ties between the two regions. On the Palestinian question the two sides reiterated their positions regarding the resumption of the Peace Process and the early establishment of the independent Palestinian State in accordance with relevant UN and Security Council Resolutions.

6. The two sides exchanged views on international issues of mutual concern. They stressed their commitment to multilateralism and the urge need for restructuring of the United Nations, particularly the Security Council, in order to adequately serve the interests of developing countries. The two sides also expressed their rejection to terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. They further stressed the imperative of South-South cooperation. The two sides hailed the 50th anniversary this year of the Bandung Conference and expressed their conviction that the challenges faced by developing countries would greatly be overcome through stronger solidarity between them. The two delegations pledged to ensure cooperation and coordination between the two counties within relevant international organizations and forums.

7. The Sudanese delegation expressed its sincere gratitude for the warm reception and the kind hospitality extended to them throughout the visit. At the end of their deliberations the two sides agreed to hold the Joint Ministerial Commission in New Delhi in the Second half of 2005 and the 5th Session of the Foreign Office consultations in Khartoum, during 2006. Exact dates will be agreed upon later and communicated through diplomatic channels of the two countries.






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