Palestinian Authority urges Sudan to hand over confiscated assets

Hamas says it has no links to companies and individuals targeted by Sudan's crackdown

The Palestinian Authority has urged Sudan to hand over assets it seized as part of a crackdown targeting Sudan-based operations to fund the Palestinian militant group Hamas.

Sudan was long an ally of Hamas under former president Omar Al Bashir. Since he was overthrown in 2019, Sudanese authorities have taken control of investments and companies they say channelled funding to the Islamist group for years.

"We hope that the state of #Sudan, which has always been a supporter (people and a government) to #Palestine, to hand over the movable and immovable funds that were confiscated to the State of Palestine and its Government," Reuters reported Hussein Al Sheikh, a senior Palestinian official close to President Mahmoud Abbas, as saying on Twitter.

Hamas, a bitter rival of Abbas, said on Friday it had no links to companies and individuals targeted by Sudan's crackdown. The seized assets belonged to Palestinian investors and businesses, it said.

In Khartoum, a senior official in the task force overseeing government-led asset seizures did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The task force said it does not seize legitimate private property but rather retrieves public property that was misappropriated during Bashir's long rule.

Hamas is designated by the west as a terrorist organisation and Sudan's takeover of at least a dozen companies that officials say were linked to Hamas has helped accelerate its realignment with western governments since Bashir's overthrow.

Over the past year, Khartoum has won removal from the US state sponsors of terrorism list and is on course for relief of more than $50 billion in debt.

At the same time, Hamas has lost a foreign base where members and supporters could live, raise money and channel Iranian weapons and funds to the Gaza Strip, according to Sudanese and Palestinian analysts.

Updated: September 25th 2021, 3:50 PM