KHARTOUM, The leaders of Sudan and Egypt have agreed that their countries will not raise the issue of the Halayeb Triangle, a territory disputed between the two countries, the official Sudan News Agency (SUNA) reports.

The agreement came at a meeting Tuesday between Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and his Egyptian counterpart, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, on the sidelines of the African Union (AU) Summit in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

“The Halayeb issue is extensive, where al-Bashir and el-Sisi agreed that the issues of difference are not to preoccupy the two countries from what can lead efforts to strengthen the relationship between them,” SUNA quoted Ibrahim Ghandour, Sudan’s foreign minister, as saying.

“The two presidents directed the two countries’ foreign ministers to work out executive and structural frameworks for integrative visions, including co-ordination at all political, parliamentary and people’s levels,” he added.

According to a joint communique published by SUNA, al-Bashir and el-Sisi reiterated solidarity in the face of challenges in the Arab region, Africa and the Middle East.

The two presidents also stressed commitment to better bilateral ties in all economic, commercial, cultural, political and security fields. They expected further co-ordination and co-operation between Sudan and Egypt at all levels and a new phase of brotherly relationship between the two countries.

Sudan and Egypt have been disputing the Shalateen and Halayeb areas as both countries claim sovereignty over them.

About two weeks ago, Khartoum announced that it had renewed its complaint to the United Nations Security Council on the disputed Halayeb Triangle, an area of land measuring 20,580 square kilometres located on the Red Sea coast.

Last October, Sudan threatened to resort to international arbitration over Halayeb if negotiations with Egypt failed. Last April, Cairo rejected a request by Khartoum for direct negotiations over the disputed Halayeb and Shalateen areas.