Samaria Regional Council head Yossi Dagan met with a Sudanese official over the weekend, in a move signaling that the country’s fledgling normalized ties with Israel would also include the settlements.
“We’re living in historic times,” said Dagan on Saturday night when he spoke with Sudanese Ambassador Omar El-Shaikh in an undisclosed Arab country.
Dagan was there with a delegation from Samaria to discuss economic cooperation between Sudan and the Samaria region of the West Bank.
Just last Tuesday, the Sudanese cabinet voted to repeal a 1958 law that forbade diplomatic and business relations with Israel. Sudan is one of four countries that normalized ties with Israel under the rubric of the former Trump administration’s Abraham Accords. The accords also included the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco.
In December 2020, Dagan led a business delegation to the UAE and signed contracts to allow for the export of settler products to the Gulf country.
He hopes to visit Khartoum to sign similar business deals. Out of the four countries, Sudan’s capital of Khartoum has special symbolic significance because the Arab League met there after the 1967 Six Day War and agreed to what became known as the three “no’s of Khartoum” – no to recognition of Israel, no to negotiations with Israel and no to peace with Israel.
Now as a sign of the changing times, Dagan met with el-Sheikh, who is in charge of democratic transition in Sudan, and handed him a menorah as a present. Dagan noted that they were both descendants of the biblical Abraham. He also invited him to visit Samaria.
“We are happy that he came here,” El-Sheikh said. “We think there will be a lot of collaboration – economic and cultural – in order to support the peace and all the love which is around this relationship.”