Sudan crisis focus of al-Bashir speech

Feb. 24, 2007 at 3:34 PM
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DETROIT, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir told a Muslim convention meeting in Detroit that his African nation is being targeted by former colonial powers.

Speaking via a video conference Friday to the convention of the Nation of Islam, al-Bashir said Sudan is currently being targeted by Israel, Britain and the United States, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The Sudanese president's allegation at Detroit's Cobo Center came in the wake of years of international criticism of Sudan regarding its internal policies. The African nation has garnered political attention for alleged tolerance for slavery within its borders, offering sanctuary to international terrorists and killing its own people.

Al-Bashir said that no slavery or ethnic cleansing occurs within his nation's borders and asked those in attendance at the convention to increase their interest in the troubles facing Africa. "Don't ... suggest this is beyond the business of the Nation of Islam," he said.

Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan, who is suffering from the effects of treatment for prostate cancer, is to make his annual "Saviours Day" address Sunday at Ford Field, his first public appearance in seven months.

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