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Sudan military leader heads to Makkah for twin summits

May 30, 2019 at 5:00 pm

Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud (R) meets Head of the Sudanese Transitional Military Council (TMC), Abdul Fattah al-Burhan (L) during an emergency Arab League Summit at Al Safa Palace in Mecca, Saudi Arabia on May 31, 2019 [Bandar Algaloud / Saudi Kingdom Council / Handout – Anadolu Agency]

Abdul Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan’s ruling Transitional Military Council (TMC), set out for Saudi Arabia on Thursday to take part in two emergency summits being held in the city of Makkah, Anadolu Agency reports.

In a statement, the TMC said al-Burhan’s visit comes at the invitation of Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz to attend both events — an Arab League summit and an Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit — slated for Thursday and Friday respectively.

On the sidelines of the twin summits, al-Burhan is expected to meet with leaders of several Arab and Muslim countries.

Both of the summits in Makkah are being convened to discuss what Riyadh describes as the “Iranian threat” to the region.

READ: UK envoy to Sudan meets SPLM leaders

On Thursday, Makkah will also host a summit of the Saudi-led Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which is also being convened to discuss recent developments vis-à-vis Iran.

In early May, the United Arab Emirates claimed that four vessels — including two oil tankers — had been targeted in “sabotage attacks” near its territorial waters.

Days later, Saudi Arabia said that armed drones had attacked two pumping stations on the East-West Pipeline, which carries oil from the kingdom’s Eastern Province to the Port of Yanbu.

Riyadh has since accused Yemen’s Houthi rebel group, which is known to be close to Iran, for the alleged drone attack.