Sudan central bank chief dies of heart attack in Turkey

Sudan central bank chief dies of heart attack in Turkey

KHARTOUM - Agence France-Presse
Sudan central bank chief dies of heart attack in Turkey

Sudan’s central bank governor Hazem Abdelqader has died of a heart attack while on a visit to Turkey, the Sudanese presidency said on June 16.

It was not immediately clear whether Abdelqader was on an official visit to Turkey but the presidency said in a statement that he died of a heart attack without giving further details.

Born in 1960, Abdeqader was appointed head of Sudan’s Central Bank in December 2016.

Since taking over as governor, Abdelqader participated in negotiations with the United States that helped lift a decades-old trade embargo imposed by Washington on Khartoum.

In recent months the central bank has faced an acute shortage of foreign currency that has seen the Sudanese pound plunge against the dollar on the black market.

The central bank has devalued the pound twice against the dollar since January.

Sudan’s overall economy has been hit hard, particularly after the south separated from the north in 2011, taking with it about 75 percent of oil revenues.

Sudanese officials say that an economic revival that was expected after the lifting of U.S. sanctions has not materialized as international banks continue to be wary of doing business with Sudanese banks.

Although Washington lifted the sanctions on Oct. 12, it has kept Khartoum on its list of “state sponsors of terrorism,” which Sudanese officials say keeps international banks away from the African country.

Washington imposed sanctions on Khartoum in 1997 for its alleged support to Islamist militants. Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden lived in Sudan between 1992 and 1996.