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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Sudanese call for 'death to Israel' after alleged 'Israeli attack' on Khartoum weapons factory

300 people gathered outside a Sudanese government building calling for 'death to Israel' after an explosion at a Khartoum weapons factory on Tuesday night, which the Sudanese government is blaming on Israel. Sudan has also called on the UN Security Council to condemn Israel. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak had no comment about the explosion.
A huge fire broke out late on Tuesday at the Yarmouk arms factory in the south of the capital which was rocked by several explosions, witnesses said. Firefighters took more than two hours to extinguish the fire at Sudan's main factory for ammunition and small arms.
"Four military planes attacked the Yarmouk plant ... We believe that Israel is behind it," Information Minister Ahmed Belal Osman told reporters, adding that the planes appeared to approach the site from the east.
"Sudan reserves the right to strike back at Israel," he said, adding that two citizens had been killed and the plant had been partially destroyed. Another person was seriously injured, he said.
Around 300 people gathered at the courtyard of a government building where the Sudanese cabinet was in an emergency meeting, shouting "Death to Israel" and "Remove Israel from the map."
"Israel is a country of injustice that needs to be deterred," Vice President Ali Osman Taha, standing next to President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, told the crowd. "This attack only strengthens our firmness."
The governor of Khartoum state initially had ruled out any "external" cause for the blast but officials later showed journalists a video from the vast site. A huge crater could be seen next to two destroyed buildings and what appeared to be a rocket lying on the ground.
Osman said an analysis of rocket debris and other material had shown that the attack was engineered by Israel, which Sudan views as an enemy.
Of course, there is no evidence whatsoever that Israel carried out this attack other than Sudan's say-so. It sounds a lot more likely that it was a work accident. But Barak should have said 'we know nothing about this' rather than saying 'no comment.' Even if we do know something about it.


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