The Sudanese Public Prosecution said, on Monday, in a statement that the customs’s statement about the legal validity of the arms shipment that was seized at Khartoum Airport and the start of its clearance procedures “bypasses the authorities of the Public Prosecution.”
The statement quoted the Chief Prosecutor of Empowerment and Recovering Public Funds, Al-Amthal Abdel-Fattah, as saying, “We consider the customs talk of the validity of the shipment’s legality and the start of its clearance procedures, in violation of the prosecution authorities, the Criminal Procedures Law, the Empowerment Removal Law, and the dismantling of the June 30 system.”
He added, “From what is known, it is not possible to review the decisions of the Public Prosecution or evaluate the content of its letters and orders except through the well-known degrees of appeal, which do not include the police, considering that it is a law enforcement agency only and does not have the authority to evaluate the actions and decisions of the prosecution.”
He continued, “Customs remains obligated to stop any shipment clearance process until the prosecution completes its investigations and issues a legal decision in accordance with it.”
The Sudanese Ministry of Interior issued a press statement about the circumstances of the shipment of weapons that arrived in the country, on Sunday, in which it clarified that the shipment, which arrived on board the Ethiopian Airlines, contains 73 parcels of bullets and 290 rifles of 223 caliber, according to the agency.
The ministry indicated that the procedures for entering the shipment into Sudan were “sound.”
For its part, Ethiopian Airlines confirmed that the shipment of weapons transported to Khartoum, which was revealed on Sunday, was being held in Addis Ababa, and was sent to Sudan, after its “unknown” owner filed a lawsuit.
On Sunday, the official Sudanese News Agency reported that the Sudanese authorities had seized a shipment of weapons in 72 boxes that had arrived by air from Ethiopia, and that there were “doubts about the intentions of using them in crimes against the state.”
For its part, Ethiopian Airlines said that the weapons mentioned were hunting rifles within a “legal” shipment.
The shipment is being examined by the committee tasked with dismantling the regime of former President Omar al-Bashir, who was toppled by a popular uprising in April 2019. The committee concluded that the weapons arrived in Ethiopia from Moscow in May 2019.
The Sudanese News Agency said that it was not yet clear who intended to receive the weapons, but the committee did not rule out that they were coming to loyalists of Al-Bashir’s government, whom the Sudanese authorities accuse of seeking to undermine the transition of power in the country.
The agency said the boxes contained weapons and night vision goggles, and that they arrived on a commercial flight on Saturday evening.
The agency said that the committee indicated “doubts about the intentions of using it in crimes against the state, impeding the democratic transition, and preventing the transition to a civil state.”
For its part, Ethiopian Airlines said in a statement that the guns were held for a long time in Addis Ababa for verification, and that the consignee, whose identity was not revealed, had filed a lawsuit against the airline before a Sudanese court, demanding that the company surrender the guns and pay compensation of $250,000. .
Tensions are escalating between Sudan and Ethiopia due to the repercussions of the conflict in the Ethiopian Tigray region and the construction of the giant Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile by Addis Ababa.