Erdogan signs military, economic accords on first visit to Khartoum

This handout photograph taken and released by the Turkish Presidential Press Office on December 24, 2017, shows President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) as he is embraced by President of Sudan Omar al-Bashir (R) during an official welcoming cerenomy at Khartoum International Airport. / AFP PHOTO / TURKISH PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SERVICE / KAYHAN OZER / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / KAYHAN OZER/TURKISH PRESIDENCY PRESS OFFICE" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

Turkey has boosted investments in struggling Sudan since south seceded in 2011, taking with it three-quarters of country’s oil output

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan arrived in Khartoum, Sudan, on Sunday for a two-day visit aimed at deepening the relations between the two countries. President Erdogan met with his Sudanese counterpart Omar al-Bashir at the start of his three-country African tour. Erdogan will visit Chad and Tunisia between Tuesday and Thursday.

Erdogan is accompanied by a large delegation including Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Education Minister Ismet Yilmaz, Agriculture Minister Ahmet Esref Fakibaba, Energy Minister Berat Albayrak, Culture and Tourism Minister Numan Kurtulmus, Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister Ahmet Arslan, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci, Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli, Turkish Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar and a delegation of some 150 Turkish businessmen.

Twelve accords were signed at the outset of his two-day visit to Khartoum, including economic and military deals as well as on the creation of a strategic cooperation council, Erdogan told a news conference.

He said the two Muslim countries aimed to boost two-way trade from the current level of $500m a year to $1bn in an initial stage and then $10bn.

Sudan’s economy has been struggling since the south seceded in 2011, taking with it three-quarters of the country’s oil output. In recent years, Turkey has boosted investments in Sudan.

Bashir hailed the trip by Erdogan, who is to travel on to Chad and Tunisia, as an “historic” first visit to Sudan by a Turkish president.