President Donald Trump has had a mixed record in many ways pertaining to foreign policy. He has taken measures to reduce hostilities in Syria while doubling down on his predecessor’s troop surge in Afghanistan and offering a belligerent approach toward relations with North Korea. In Sudan, Trump is once again embracing his ‘America First’ mandate by removing crippling economic sanctions on the African nation.
“The government of Sudan’s actions during the last nine months show that it is serious about cooperating with the United States and has taken significant steps to stop conflict and improve humanitarian access within Sudan, and to promote regional stability,” said Heather Nauert, spokeswoman for Trump’s State Department.
The removal of these sanctions does come with a catch, a familiar hallmark of Trump’s carrot and stick method of deal-making that he has brought from the corporate boardroom into the oval office.
“Any further normalization of ties will require continued progress by the government of Sudan,” Nauert said.
According to a New York Times report, Trump’s State Department acknowledged the many faults of the Sudanese government. Despite their faults, U.S. officials believe that Sudan is showing significant progress in key areas. They cited the ending of Khartoum’s attacks on Darfur and other regions, reducing destabilizing behavior in South Sudan, and partnering with the United States on counter-terrorism initiatives as hopeful measures taken by the country in recent weeks.
Sudan is hopeful that the news will put hostilities between the nations to rest. Ibrahim Ghandour, who serves as foreign minister of Sudan, said that “lifting the sanctions means lifting the extortion from the people of Sudan who long suffered from them.” As libertarian icon and former U.S. Rep. Ron Paul always said, economic sanctions are acts of war. By removing them from the Sudan, the Trump administration takes tangible steps toward peace in a world that desperately needs it.