President Ja'afar al-Nimeiry of the Sudan in on his first official visit to France. He?
SV:President Ja'afar al-Nimeiry of Sudan and French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing entering Elysee Palace.
SV INTERIOR: newsmen film two Presidents seated talking (4 shots)
SV EXTERIOR: French and Sudanese flags flying.
SCU INTERIOR PULL BACK TO LV: President Nimeiry replying in Arabic to question from reporter.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: President Ja'afar al-Nimeiry of the Sudan in on his first official visit to France. He arrived in Paris on Monday (16 May) and French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing told him immediately that France shared his country's concern over the Red Sea region.
The influential French newspaper 'Le Monde' said on Monday that although the Sudanese and French Presidents might have different attitudes towards Eritrea, their views on what ought to happen in the Horn of Africa appeared to be very close.
SYNOPSIS:The two leaders met again the following day (17 May) and President Giscard said his talks with the Sudanese President would show the close nature of relations between their respective countries. President Giscard also said he was interested in hearing Sudanese views on stability and peace in the Horn of Africa. According to Reuters news agency, President Nimeiry views France's future role in the region as being of major importance.
Later President Nimeiry gave a news conference and accused the Soviet Union of trying to dominate Africa in "a new form of colonialism". He elaborated by saying that the Soviet Union was a country which had strategies and objectives and was using all its weight to dominate Africa politically. He accused the Soviets of offering arms in the name of aid and dominating countries from within in the name of democracy.
President Nimeiry also used his news conference to launch an appeal for international backing for the Eritrean Liberation Movement and made strong attacks on the Ethiopian government. "We declare solemnly that we are and will be on the side of the Eritrean cause", he said "and the right of the Eritrean people to self-determination". He added that he regretted that the Ethiopian government had now fallen under the influence of the Soviet Union. Eritrea is fighting a secessionist war for independence from Ethiopia.,... and neighbours on the Sudan.
Asked about the Soviet role in the Libyan Jamahiriyah (formerly Libya), President Nimeiry said the Soviets now had sophisticated arms and material at their disposal in that country which they could use at any moment against other nations. Asked about his own interest in French armaments he declined to say what sort of weapons he was interested in, but recalled that the Soviet Union had now stopped supplying Sudan with arms. Later President Nimeiry toured the French armaments display centre at Satory, west of Paris.