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Celebrations in Khartoum last December marking the one-year anniversary of the uprising. Photo: Ashraf Shazly/AFP via Getty Images

Sudan's transitional government has reached an agreement to compensate the families of victims of the 2000 U.S.S. Cole attack, which killed 17 sailors and injured 39, it said Thursday.

Why it matters: This is part of an effort to get off the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. Sudan previously harbored al-Qaeda, which carried out the attack. The designation carries restrictions on foreign assistance and financial transactions that have strangled Sudan's economy.

The big picture: This is only one of several steps to clean up Sudan's international image taken by the joint military-civilian government that replaced brutal dictator Omar al-Bashir last year.

  • The most high-profile act was the announcement this week that Bashir will go before the International Criminal Court to face charges for war crimes and genocide in Darfur.
    • It's not yet clear where (or whether) a trial will take place.
  • Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok also made a historic visit to the Nuba Mountains, a rebel stronghold, and opened the isolated region to foreign aid.
  • Meanwhile, the leader of Sudan's governing council, Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, held a landmark meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu after decades of hostile relations.

What to watch: Sudan's economy is in shambles and its transition to democracy is far from certain. The delicate power-sharing deal with the generals is slated to continue until elections in late 2022.

  • "[W]ithout outside help, including financial, the risk is that its democratic experiment will slip backwards," David Pilling writes in the FT. "Without it, the path of Egypt or Myanmar beckons."
  • "In the age of President Donald Trump, it has no obvious champion in Washington. Nor do Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states currently propping up Sudan have much interest in seeing a vibrant democracy take hold."

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Technology

TikTok drives new nostalgia economy

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Older brands, trends and technologies are making a comeback as younger consumers desperately chase slower, less chaotic times.

The big picture: TikTok's algorithm makes it easy for flashback items to resurface and quickly go viral both on its platform and eventually on other social networks.

Updated 7 hours ago - World

Reports: Up to 17 U.S. missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children were among up to 17 American Christian missionaries and their relatives kidnapped by a gang in Haiti on Saturday, the New York Times first reported.

Details: The missionaries had just left an orphanage and were traveling by bus to the airport to "drop off some members" and were due to travel to another destination when the gang struck in Port-au-Prince, Haitian security officials said, per the NYT.

8 hours ago - World

Melbourne, "world's most locked-down city," to lift stay-at-home orders

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews during a news conference in Melbourne, Australia, on Sunday. Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Melbourne's stay-at-home orders will end five days earlier than planned, officials in Australia's second-biggest city announced Sunday.

Why it matters: The capital of the state of Victoria has had six lockdowns totaling 262 days since March last year. That means Melbourne spent longer under lockdown than "any other city in the world" during the pandemic, Reuters notes.

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