Khartoum calls for end to strikes on Afghanistan

The Sudanese government has criticised the US-led air strikes against targets in Afghanistan, news agencies reported on Monday. In a statement issued after a cabinet meeting chaired by President Umar Hasan al-Bashir, the Sudanese government called for a halt to the military action on Afghanistan, saying it would harm innocent Afghans. "We have rejected the violence of 11 September and likewise we reject this war on Afghanistan, because it cannot be an effective means for fighting violence," AFP quoted the statement as saying. Khartoum also called on Islamic countries to increase efforts to offer humanitarian assistance to Afghans inside and outside Afghanistan, AFP said.

Following the 11 September terror attacks on New York and Washington, the government of Sudan reportedly cooperated with US officials to crack down on members of the terrorist network of Osama bin Laden - prime suspect in the attacks. Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Uthman Isma'il said on 25 September that Sudan - which is on the US State Department's list of seven terrorist-sponsoring countries - had been working with the US administration to choke off financial support for terrorist groups.