Two Islamists killed in raid on Sudan camp – government


Sudanese forces raided a training camp of militant Islamists in a remote southeastern corner of the country, killing two insurgents, said a government official.

Ahmed Abbas, governor of Sudan’s Sennawr state, said government forces had attacked the camp in a national park on Friday after a radical Islamist group attacked a nearby police station and stole weapons in October.
“After this attack, security authorities tracked them and found their camp headquarters,” he told Reuters. “Two Islamists were killed and four police officers wounded during the raid on Friday.”

Sudan’s Islamist government hosted prominent militants in the 1990s, including Osama bin Laden and Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, the Venezuelan Marxist known as Carlos the Jackal, but has since tried to distance itself from them and normalise relations with Western countries, Reuters reports.

State radio said 25 people had been arrested during the raid, among them the group’s leader. No more details were immediately available.

Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir has previously said the country will adopt a “100 percent Islamic” constitution, a pledge analysts say aims to appease Islamists who feel the government has abandoned the religious principles of the 1989 coup that brought it to power.

The United States lists Sudan as a state sponsor of terror and has applied trade sanctions on the country since 1997.

The government maintains ties with Hamas, the rulers of Gaza, and has been accused by Israeli officials of funnelling weapons to the group via the Egyptian desert.

Sudan blamed Israeli warplanes for an explosion at an arms factory in the capital Khartoum in October. Israel has not commented on the blast.

The United States renewed its sanctions against Sudan last month, citing civil conflicts in Darfur and other regions.

Sudanese officials have accused the United States of breaking promises to lift the sanctions and take steps to normalise relations after South Sudan seceded peacefully last year.