Israeli medical team comes to Sudan despite lack of diplomatic relations

The arrival was supposed to remain secret, but the plane and its unusual destination appeared on flight-tracking websites.

WITH DEPUTY Public Security Minister Gadi Yevarkan and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the memorial ceremony for Ethiopian Jews who died in Sudan on their journey to Israel, one of her first public events as a minister.  (photo credit: AMOS BEN-GERSHOM/GPO)
WITH DEPUTY Public Security Minister Gadi Yevarkan and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the memorial ceremony for Ethiopian Jews who died in Sudan on their journey to Israel, one of her first public events as a minister.
(photo credit: AMOS BEN-GERSHOM/GPO)
JERUSALEM  — A small airplane carrying an Israeli medical team along with equipment and medicine for treating the coronavirus landed in Sudan in an attempt to save the life of a Sudanese diplomat who has been working behind the scenes on the clandestine relations between the two countries.
Najwa Gadaheldam, a senior adviser to Sudan’s leader, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, died Wednesday, about 24 hours after the plane that had intended to transport her back to Israel for treatment landed in the Arab country, Israel’s Channel 13 first reported later that day.
Israel and Sudan do not have diplomatic relations. Gadaheldam had been managing the countries’ secret ties, according to the report.
The arrival was supposed to remain secret, but the plane and its unusual destination appeared on flight-tracking websites.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and al-Burhan met in February in Uganda in a meeting that the prime minister said was to discuss normalizing relations. Al-Burhan denied plans to establish official ties with Israel.