Sudan's president invited by Saudi Arabia to Trump meeting


President Trump may face another embarrassment this weekend after Saudi Arabia invited the president of Sudan, who is indicted for war crimes, to a summit he is due to attend.

Saudi Arabia dispatched special envoys to the Islamic and Arab countries with invitations for their leaders, but no Saudi diplomat arrived in Khartoum with an invitation for Bashir.

Omar al-Bashir, center, president of Sudan, stands between Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, left, and Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa at the annual Arab League summit on Wednesday, March 29, 2017, held this year on the Dead Sea in Jordan.

Bashir is wanted for war crimes by the International Criminal Court (ICC) and is shunned by Western leaders, so direct contact between him and Trump would be a diplomatic bombshell, despite a thawing of relations between Washington and Khartoum in recent months. The official wasn't authorized to speak publicly on the matter and demanded anonymity.

ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has called on all states to help with Bashir's arrest and urged the U.N. Security Council to take "robust and concrete measures" to ensure they do. Since 2009, some ICC member states have signaled that al-Bashir would be at risk of arrest if he entered their territory, and in other situations member states have relocated meetings that he was scheduled to attend.

In January, Trump's predecessor Barack Obama ordered the lifting of a 20-year US trade embargo and financial sanctions after 180 days, provided that Khartoum acts to further improve its human rights record.

The European Union imposed an arms embargo on Sudan in 1994.

The U.S. embassy stressed there has been no change to Sudan's inclusion on the United States' State Sponsor of Terrorism list (SSTL).

Shortly before leaving office, President Barack Obama temporarily lifted some financial sanctions on Sudan after seeing a reduction in military offensives by the government.

Sudan is among the six predominantly Muslim countries singled out by Trump for a temporary visa ban.

Sudanese troops are part of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen and are helping to train the Yemeni army.