Informed sources revealed that the Sudanese authorities prevented Taha Othman, the Minister of State, on Tuesday evening, from traveling to Saudi Arabia with a Saudi delegation, confirming that the prevention was made upon directives from the Sudanese Presidential Palace.
According to the sources, the minister was prevented from leaving the country despite completing all departure procedures for leaving the country to Riyadh.
Othman arrived in Khartoum on Tuesday from a two-week tour in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
For three days, the Sudanese media have been discussing the intentions of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to remove Othman from his position as director of the president’s office and minister of state, Some observers say the expected dismissal of the Sudanese state minister is related to the Gulf crisis (He is accused of leaking a phone call by the president on the crisis); however, others said that the reason for the expected firing of Othman is related to conflicts within the Sudanese government.
A media source said that the importance of Othman has emerged since 2014. However, he became more prominent when he succeeded in handling the Sudanese-Gulf relations, especially between Khartoum and Riyadh and Abu Dhabi. Othman is considered the main engineer in arranging the participation of the Sudanese forces in the Saudi-led Operation Decisive Storm.
During the summit of Trump with Muslim leaders in Riyadh Othman was seen while shaking hands with US President Donald Trump (Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir was denied attendance despite receiving an invitation from Saudi King, Salman.
The Sudanese minister also enjoys strong personal relations with the Gulf leaders, and is considered their man in Sudan.