For Immediate Release: February 15, 2011
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Just one week after the announcement that South Sudan will soon become the world’s newest nation following a largely peaceful referendum process, Sudan Now today released a report assessing the stalled progress for peace in Darfur and the need for a series of interventions to get the process back on track. A Roadmap for Peace in Darfur asserts that Darfur must become a focus for international attention and policy change equal to that of the North-South post-referendum diplomacy.
Violence in Darfur has surged in recent weeks and those involved in the peace process have expressed frustration over the Government of Sudan’s interest in keeping negotiations internal and directed by the government.
Sudan Now’s report outlines three key components to improve the peace process:
1. Negotiations need be held outside the borders of Sudan
High-level political negotiations should take place outside of Sudan between the various parties to the conflict, including the government of Sudan, the Justice and Equality Movement, the Sudan Liberation Army – Abdel Wahid, and the Sudan Liberation Army – Minni Minawi and the Liberty and Justice Movement. Holding the negotiations in-country threatens neutrality, assures public distrust of the process, and presents significant programs with logistics and access for key participants.
2. The voices of the Darfurian people need to be heard and considered
Civil society engagement inside Darfur is essential, with numerous stipulations and a mechanism to make sure their voices and those outside of Sudan are part of the peace process, in addition to moderation by the international community.
3. The international community should push for a democratic transition of North and South Sudan
High-level coordinated diplomatic engagement is needed in order to push for democratic transition in North Sudan that promotes human and civil rights in the region. It is essential that the international community work to ensure that the secession of southern Sudan does not lead to a further decline of rights and political space in the North, but rather offers an opportunity for increased transparency and pluralism.
Most important, the report asserts that the Obama administration needs to maintain a focus on the people of Darfur and push the Government of Sudan to restore humanitarian access and give UNAMID the support it needs to fulfill its mission of providing protection and security to the people of Darfur.
A Roadmap for Peace in Darfur is part of the effort being led by Sudan Now, a coalition of prominent human rights and anti-genocide groups, to call on American leadership to take a stand for promoting peace in Sudan at this critical moment in the country’s history. For more information on the campaign, please visit: www.sudanactionnow.org.
Sudan Now is a campaign led by a group of anti-genocide and human rights advocacy organizations committed to bringing meaningful and lasting peace to Sudan and encouraging strong American leadership and action to achieve this goal. The campaign challenges President Obama and top U.S. administration officials to live up to their promises to take strong and immediate action to help end the international crisis in Sudan and bring a lasting peace to Sudan’s people. Organizations participating in the campaign include Humanity United, the Enough Project at the Center for American Progress, Genocide Intervention Network, Stop Genocide Now, and Investors Against Genocide.
Katlyn Carter, 202-478-6176, email@example.com
Cosabeth Bullock, 202-478-6128, firstname.lastname@example.org
Vanessa Parra, Humanity United, 202-904-0319, email@example.com