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Friday, June 23, 2006

Sudan, Belarus ink military cooperation agreement

(KHARTOUM) — Sudan and Belarus inked a military cooperation protocol covering training, exchange of experiences, and military science fields.

Minister of Defence Gen. Abdelrahim Mohamed Hussein signed for Sudan while Minister of National Defence of Belarus signed for Belarus side.

In his address to the joint meeting between the two sides, Hussein praised the cooperation the Armed Forces delegation found from the command of the Belarus armed forces, affirming that the cooperation between the two countries will witness tangible progress in military cooperation and other domains.

Minister of Defense of Belarus, on his part, expressed the desire of his country to boost bilateral relations in all spheres.

It is to be noted that Minister of National Defence concluded a three-day visit to Belarus Thursday during which he held talks with Ministers of Defence and Foreign Affairs of Belarus, aimed to strengthen political, economic and military relations with special focus on qualifying the Armed Forces making use of Belarus’s experiences in this connection.

Belarus hopes to boost ties with Sudan with an eye to increasing industrial exports and playing a role in developing the African country’s oilfields.

On 7 February 2006, Sudan and Belarus signed a memo of understanding on boosting cooperation between the two countries in technological, scientific, agricultural and commercial fields, during the visit of Belarus Foreign Minister to Khartoum.

Also, the Belarusian Minsk Tractor Plant works with Sudanese companies in 1990. It has provided that country with 1,886 Belarus tractors since.

Belarus has exported weapons and military hardware to Sudan since 1996.

In 1997 Belarus supplied Sudan with six Russian-made Mi-24B attack helicopters and nine Russian-made T-55 battle tanks in 1996.

In 2003, it supplied that country with nine BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles, 39 BRDM-2 armoured reconnaissance vehicles, 16 D-30 howitzer guns, 10 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzers and six Grad multiple rocket launchers of two different versions.

In its 2004 report sent to the UN Register of Conventional Arms, the government notes that it supplied Sudan with 21 BRDM-2 armoured reconnaissance vehicles, seven BTR-80 and 10 BTR-70 armoured personnel carriers and a BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicle.

(source: Sudan Times)
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