Sudan

FILE - In this Oct. 15, 2000 file photo, experts in a speed boat examine the damaged hull of the USS Cole at the Yemeni port of Aden after an al-Qaida attack that killed 17 sailors. Sudan's transitional government said it's reached a settlement with families of the victims of the 2000 attack on USS Cole in Yemen, in a bid to have the African country taken off the U.S. terrorism list. At the time of the bombing, Sudan was accused of providing support to al-Qaida, which claimed responsibility for the attack. Sudan's justice ministry said the settlement was signed with the victims' families Friday. Feb. 7, 20202. (AP Photo/Dimitri Messinis, File)

CAIRO (AP) — Sudan’s transitional government said Thursday it has reached a s $70 million settlement with 17 families of the victims of the 2000 attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, a key step in having the U.S. remove Sudan from its list of state sponsors of terrorism so it can rejoin the international community after years of exclusion. In the agreement, Sudan makes no admission of wrongdoing.

Sudan was accused of providing support to al-Qaida, which claimed responsibility for the attack. Under former President Omar al-Bashir, the country was designated by Washington as a “state sponsor of terror” for hosting the group’s leader, Osama bin Laden, in the early years of his militant movement.

The announcement was the latest in a series of efforts by the interim government to close the book on al-Bashir, whose three decades of iron-fisted rule was brought to an end in popular protests last year.

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