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An Encounter with a Sudanese Military Official

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Many years ago, when I conducted my PhD research on Rwandan foreign policy, I had the fortunate opportunity to visit the Rwandan Peace Academy. This military education centre focused on training Rwandan and African officers for the difficult task of operating within peacekeeping mandates. The experience at the Rwandan Peace Academy, just south of the northern Rwandan city of Musanze, contained many insightful historical stories of the Rwandan Civil War (1990-1994), Rwandan perception of peacekeeping and of Rwanda’s military. But there was one experience during my visit which relates to the recent news of Israel and Sudan establishing diplomatic relations.

To summarise recent events, Sudan and Israel have begun foreign diplomatic relations. While Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have already recently established ties with Israel, this news is significant for two primary historical reasons. First, unlike the UAE and Bahrain, Sudan sent military soldiers to fight against Israel in the 1948 Arab–Israeli War and the Six-Day War in 1967. Sudan becomes the third Arab nation which fought against Israel to now normalise diplomatic relations. The second and perhaps most important is the historical precedence of the three ‘No’s against Israel.

The 1967 Arab League summit, hosted in Sudan’s capital city of Khartoum, formulated the Khartoum Resolution, a regional norm of not recognising Israel’s existence, not to negotiate with any Israeli government, and no to peace with the country. This historical precedence was broken in 1979 with peace agreements........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)

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