Sudan is ready to expel foreign ambassadors "if they exceed their diplomatic mission," President Omar al-Bashir was quoted as saying on Thursday. Tensions between Bashir and the West have risen since the International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant accusing him of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur.
In an interview due to be published in Egypt's independent Al-Isboa weekly on Saturday, Bashir said expelling the aid agencies was designed to send a clear message to the West. "We have 87 NGOs in Darfur and we expelled 12 of them which had intelligence-linked activities," he was quoted as saying.
Bashir has said Sudan will replace the work of the expelled agencies and warned that Khartoum wanted no foreign aid groups on the ground within a year. "Their expulsion is a clear message and I hope that the West and the Americans will understand it. We will not be afraid of their threats or of their media which tell lies."
"And I tell them that we are even ready to expel ambassadors if they exceed their diplomatic mission."