SUDAN WATCH: US Secretary of State Rice speaks of "genocide in Darfur" - Sudan measure puts administration in tough spot

Thursday, February 16, 2006

US Secretary of State Rice speaks of "genocide in Darfur" - Sudan measure puts administration in tough spot

Note how US Department of State Secretary Condoleezza Rice, in a prepared statement before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in Washington, DC on February 15, 2006, uses the words "genocide in Darfur".

See excerpt from section in statement entitled "Building State Capacity":
"Our efforts to build state capacity continue in Sudan. The need for security is of the utmost importance to this effort, and the Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA) points the way forward. The CPA, which ended 22 years of North-South civil war in Sudan, is the framework for resolution of conflict throughout Sudan. The CPA created a Government of National Unity that shares power and wealth, and establishes elections at every level by 2009.

Implementing the CPA is essential to ending the genocide in Darfur. The United States is appalled by the ongoing atrocities that have persisted in Darfur, and we continue to lead the ongoing international effort to aid the region's displaced people, assisting over 1.8 million internally-displaced persons and over 200,000 Sudanese refugees in Chad. I ask for your full support of the President's upcoming supplemental request, which will include support for the African Union and for transition to a UN Peacekeeping Mission to bring peace to this war-torn area. We are requesting $1.1 billion in the FY 2007 budget to transition to peace in Sudan, meet humanitarian needs, lay the foundations for economic development, and strengthen sustainable democratic institutions."
[Via Coalition for Darfur with thanks]

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Photo: On Monday, UN chief Kofi Annan met with President Bush get support for peacekeepers in Darfur. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP via CSM report Urgent calls for more troops to Darfur)
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Sudan measure puts Bush administration in tough spot

A bipartisan resolution denouncing both Sudan and the Arab League may place the White House in the difficult position of choosing between strategic and humanitarian interests. The resolution denounces Arab League for scheduling its March summit in Khartoum.

The White House will face tremendous pressure to support the measure, which expresses disapproval for the Arab League's holding its annual summit in Sudan, to bring attention to what has been deemed by many as genocide in the country's Darfur region. However, such support may undermine U.S. intelligence-sharing with Sudan as well as diplomatic efforts in Darfur and Iraq.

Full story by David Mikhail at The Hill, 16 February 2006.
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Further reading:

June 30, 2004 No genocide in Darfur: US government

Sep 9, 2004 BBC Powell declares genocide in Sudan - The BBC's state department correspondent Jill McGivering says the use of the word genocide does not legally oblige the US to act, but it does increase the moral and political pressure.

Sep 9, 2004 US Mission to the UN in Geneva Press Release on The Crisis in Darfur - Text of Secretary Colin L Powell Testimony Before the Senate Foreign Relations CommitteeWashington DC Sep 9. 2004: "Mr. Chairman, as I have said, the evidence leads us to the conclusion, the United States to the conclusion; that genocide has occurred and may still be occurring in Darfur. We believe the evidence corroborates the specific intent of the perpetrators to destroy "a group in whole or in part," the words of the Convention. This intent may be inferred from their deliberate conduct. We believe other elements of the convention have been met as well."

Jan 31, 2005 BBC UN 'rules out' genocide in Darfur.

July 3, 2005 BBC Panorama The New Killing Fields transcript: CHRIS MULLIN MP (Foreign Office minister): "What we think is not an effective way of stopping the killings is the way that some people... is the suggestion that some people are urging upon us, that somehow there's some western force that could come riding over the hills and everything will be alright again, but it's not like that. And the odds are that if any western force did intervene it would become bogged down and that some new cause for all the Jihadists in the world would emerge and we'd find ourselves very quickly being shot at by all sides. Plus we would probably destabilise the whole of Sudan which is the size of Western Europe and the last thing we want is a failed state the size of Western Europe on our hands in Africa."

Feb 4, 2006 Eric Reeves - As violence still displaces Daruris, US decides genocide no longer exist.

Feb 16. 2006 UK Conservative Party Speech to the Johns Hopkins SAIS Center for Transatlantic Relations in Washington DC by former leader William Hague mentions the words Genocide in Darfur ...

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