Home | News    Wednesday 16 December 2009

Congress presses for harder line on Sudan diplomacy, arms embargo

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By Daniel Van Oudenaren

December 15, 2009 (WASHINGTON) – Lawmakers in Washington this Monday and Tuesday called on President Obama and senior officials to take a harder line against the government led by President Omar Al-Bashir, which is in trilateral negotiations with the United States and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement.

The Obama Administration’s unveiling of its official strategy toward Sudan in October was greeted domestically with some hesitation but general approval. Since then, the presidential envoy Scott Gration, who is currently on diplomatic travel, has continued to articulate a defense of his trips to meet with members of Sudan’s senior political leadership.

Secretary Clinton, for her part, in a speech Monday evening suggested that the Administration’s approach to human rights has added a considered dose of realism to US diplomacy, saying "we must be pragmatic and agile in pursuit of our human rights agenda – not compromising on our principles, but doing what is most likely to make them real." In a mention of Sudan, she recommended "we have to continue to press for solutions," without elaboration whereby.

But such voices from within the US Executive Branch were met this week with a broadside of criticism and advice from lawmakers, activists, Sudanese expatriates, and an independent commission established by Congress.

In a move led by Senators Russ Feingold and John McCain, 27 total senators signed a letter calling for the UN Security Council to turn to violations of the UN arms embargo on Darfur. The letter, addressed to Ambassador Susan Rice, the US envoy at the United Nations in New York, asks her to "begin a discussion at the Security Council about pressures that can be brought to bear against belligerents in Darfur in the case that these violations persist."

The senators endorsed recommendations made by a UN Panel of Experts who had concluded research on the abortive arms embargo on Darfur and presented their findings to the UN Secretary General and then this month to the US Congress. Proposed steps include requiring Sudan’s government to submit to the Security Council bimonthly reports on its movement of troops and materiel into and out of Darfur. Other information uncovered by the UN Panel may lead to additional US designations of individuals to be targeted for financial sanctions and travel bans, the senators’ letter suggests.

Another open letter, addressed to President Obama, was released today by 50 leading Sudan advocates and Sudanese expatriates from around the country. It calls for "multilateral asset freezes and travel bans," support of the International Criminal Court cases against Sudanese officials, denial of debt relief, and enforcement of the UN arms embargo.

In the US House of Representatives, three members on Tuesday morning joined two members of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) at an "emergency press conference," as it was described by Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey. The event marked the first public criticism of the Sudan policy from Rep. Frank Wolf, a legislator with long-standing involvement with the issue.

USCIRF Commission Chairman Leonard A. Leo, having recently returned from a five day visit to Khartoum, said "it is time for the United States to exercise strength. The policy of engagement – ‘cookies and gold stars’ – is not working. It is emboldening Khartoum to a point where this peace process is perilously close to failure."

The sudden renewed furor over Sudan comes after recent crackdowns on demonstrators in Khartoum who were led in part by politicians of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement. The latter party, a signatory to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), objects to major gaps in implementation of the 2005 deal, whose terms are set to expire in January 2011.

Mr. Leo, in a statement taken as he was making his return last Thursday, said that "Leadership will come only from the top, and many of the officials we met were urging the Commission to take home a plea for greater US strength and pressure on recalcitrant signatories. We call upon Secretary Clinton in the next two weeks to send a strong message to the CPA signatory parties, as well as the international community, by personally standing with the peace process and seeking to reestablish a level playing field for free and fair implementation of the CPA."

Also calling for leadership from the top, President of the Save Darfur Coalition Jerry Fowler noted, "With elections rapidly approaching and the atmosphere getting more and more volatile, the situation in Sudan cries out for presidential leadership. In his Nobel address, President Obama recognized that the ’world must stand together as one’ in dealing with recalcitrant regimes like Sudan’s. That will not happen without sustained engagement by President Obama himself."

(ST)

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  • 16 December 2009 06:37, by johnmaker

    Life is God gift to humanbeing.But what happen in sudan it seem like Al bashir is the life giver.So that he can killed anytime he want and planted more arab people on the clear place he had killed it people.US should not only ban sudan it diplomat,but to send troop to sudan and takecare of the innocent who are been killed day and night by the incompetent govt led by criminal.Soft talk with suadn diplomat does not help innocent at all.I would also suggest that Mr Gration should be releaved right now and us should appoint another envoy to sudan.Thank.

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    • 16 December 2009 12:54, by Piny Amec Abethool-Jesus

      To all the US senators and SPLA/M leaders and members

      The problem of Sudan is Islam. The source of NCP /NIF‘s evil laws and constitution is Islam. Islam is a Socio-Political Virus which is similar to HIV. Mr Donkey Horse Al beskir is driven by Islamic ideology.

      Islam is against women, foods, music, political parties, and freedom of speech and more importantly it is against other faiths in particularly Christianity. The US government need to work hard to remove this NCP government by all means. First, the US should support the SPLA/M and the Darfur movement to fight this self-serving government of NCP/NIF. The US should stop playing with NCP/NIF and imposed tougher sanctions against all leaders of this party.

      Let me explain why Islam is the major problem of Sudan and the world, too.
      Islamists and their supporters have a shallow and uncivilized “ideology” which cannot stand up to any rational thinking. It does not offer any alternative to any social, political, or economic order which mankind has thus far has known. It exclusively incites to hatred, violence, and discrimination against women and followers of other faiths. “Islamism, including numerous passages in Shari’a and the Koran, is a destructive mindset.

      However, without oil and suicide bombing Islamists would be roaming the Arabian Peninsula, the birth place of Islamism, and perish from hunger. Petrodollars and Wahabism, a wild irrational version of Islam, are nurturing Islamism and Muslim terror.

      Koran schools across the globe stuff young brains with hatred against the rest of the world. Students at these schools are taught that they are the “real Muslims”. Ridding the world of the “infidels” is their primary religious obligation. In return for blowing up themselves in crowded places they are promised paradise and an eternal prosperous life among 72 young virgin pretty women of their choice.

      Now, when you scrutinize Islamism on the ground, you find out that its backers, in particular in the Arab world, focus on the following:
      For Islamists, women are the source of all evil. They (men) primarily associate women with sex and only sex. Therefore, women must cover every part of their body when they are outside their homes. Women are seductive, Islamists allege. If they expose any part of their body, men would be distracted and their lust is stirred, which is eventually “sinful”.

      According to Islam, women must be ready for intercourse at any time the husband wishes so.

      “Your wives are a tilth for you, so go into your tilth when you like, and do good beforehand for yourselves, and be careful (of your duty) to Allah, and know that you will meet Him, and give good news to the believers.” (Sura 2, verse 223).

      During menstruation, however, men should keep away from women; they are filthy. The Koran says:
      “It (menstruation) is a discomfort; therefore keep aloof from the women during the menstrual discharge and do not go near them until they have become clean; then when they have cleansed themselves, go in to them as Allah has commanded you; surely Allah loves those who turn much (to Him), and He loves those who purify themselves.” (Sura 2, verse 222).

      Women, according to Islamists and the Koran, are, in general, unclean creature. After a Muslim has washed and prepared himself for prayer, he should not touch a woman. She tarnishes his cleanliness. Therefore, “pious” Muslims never shake hands with women.

      “O you who believe! do not go near prayer until you have washed yourselves; and if you have touched women, and you cannot find water, betake yourselves to pure earth, then wipe your faces and your hands; surely Allah is Pardoning, Forgiving.” (Sura 4, verse 43).

      For Islamists, even the woman’s voice is “’aura” (a sexual organ). A woman on Saudi radio and TV, for instance, is not allowed to be interviewed by a man. Also a woman should never tell her name in public. Therefore, she is, for example, “um Muhammad”, (the mother of Muhammad), or “um Ali”.

      Islamists demand that a woman’s face should never be photographed. Women of Islamists in Kuwait are allowed to have their photos on the driver’s license with a dark black face cover. The majority of them are usually reckless drivers and no police dare stop them to take them to task.

      Islamists in several Arab and Muslim countries have succeeded in forcing sex-segregation at schools and universities. That is the case in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Malaysia, Iran, and Pakistan. Bosnia and Kosovo are also introducing this system.

      Women as witnesses, according to Islamists, are unreliable. Therefore, the testimonies of two female witnesses are required to equal that of one male witness in Shari’a courts (Sura 2, verse 282). Further, Women are entitled to inherit only half a portion of that of a man (Sura 4, verse 176).

      For many men at the Arab Gulf, the brain of a woman is “too small”; it is half the size of that of a man.

      Also, Islamists encourage forcing minor girls to marry. The youngest was 8 years old whose father forced her to marry a 57-year-man in Sana’a, the Yemen Times reports (October 10, 2008).

      As some human rights organizations protested, a local judge defended the case by analogy; the Prophet Muhammad married Aisha, one of his wives, as she was 9 years old.

      A real Muslim, for Islamists, is the one who practices Islam to the letter. Muslims are not allowed to use their left hand when they eat or drink. It is the one which one uses to wash their ass.

      According to Islamists, a Muslim should never donate an organ, heart or kidneys for example, to a non-Muslim. Ali Gumaa, the grand mufti of Egypt and the Islamist fanatic, Yousef Al Qaradhawi, approved of that on Al Jazeera TV (February 16, 2008).

      Freedom of speech is also forbidden, according to Islamists. You are not allowed to question anything in the Koran, Hadiith, or Shari’a. These scripts are sacred.
      Music, for Islamists, is also haram (forbidden). It is a Western fad. It is noise. A good Muslim listens only to recorded recitations of the Koran.

      Political “parties” is “hizb” (fragmentation) and as such are forbidden in the Arab Gulf countries. In Kuwait there is a parliament, but parties are forbidden. Saudi Arabia rejects democracy all together. It is un-Islamic. Shura (consultation) is the Islamic alternative. This is one of the reasons why the Al Saud is vehemently sticking to Shari’a. It justifies their absolute despotic rule.

      Besides, Islamists reject all secular constitutions and secular laws. They advocate that the Shari’a is the best constitution on earth. It is the law of Allah.
      Abdul Hadi Palazzi, an Italian Islam expert said several times, “The Americans should have invaded Saudi Arabia, instead of Iraq. It IS the source of all evil.” I would add Egypt, Qatar, Sudan, and the UAE. The Islamist establishments in these countries and their media are fostering Islamism. All these regimes proclaim that they are friends of the West, but at the same time they fund and support Islamism.

      It is, however, clear that America and the West at large would not want to antagonize these regimes for well-known geopolitical and economic considerations.

      My message to all the US senators and SPLA/M leaders and members is that, if we play with NCP/NIF now, we will pay later; it is good for all of us to pay now and play later after we have defeated this ideology of Islam in Sudan, America and around the world.

      Piny Amec Abethool -Jesus

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      • 17 December 2009 13:07, by Othello

        The problem with muslims today is they also (like many others against Islam) misinterpret their own book, the Koran. Can I Judge Sudanese people (regardless if their from the south or north) on the actions of the Sudanese leaders?

        Keep in mind, regardless of what people claim, there is no "Islamic State", because if there were, to be quite honest, there wouldn’t be any injustices in any so called Islamic State....... and we all know how just the Sudanese government is?!?!?!?

        Please check this short video about what Islam is about:

        http://ummahfilms.blogspot.com/2007/07/its-here-ummah-films-season-2-finale.html

        Thanks!!!

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  • 16 December 2009 06:38, by Samson Shawel Ambaye

    God be with USA for asset freezes and travel bans against Bashir and his criminal government.

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  • 16 December 2009 06:45, by DASODIKO

    I personally appreciate these scrupulous Congressmen for their individual efforts to bring peace to Sudan. However, I think now is too late to save the CPA. The National Congress Party of the indicted President Bashir has already traversed the road for his party to win the coming elections, by registering all of its supporters including the Sudan arm forces wherever they are and also given a chance to registered twice places of their works and origins. This means, they will vote twice since they have money and all mean of transportation to do that.

    On the other hand, the amendment of the restricted laws stipulated on CPA have not yet been amended, and the NCP continues to arrest the innocent civilians without trials. If the Sergent policeman of the Islamic regime is able to arrest the Minister at the Ministry of Interior because he belongs to SPLM/A; so what would we expect will happen in the time of the election? All opposition parties will go to jail for the NCP to win.

    So I am wondering What America is going to save from the CPA when four years were thrown in the wind. I doubt America and his allies to save even Sudan. The country is heading to war %100; and if the American envoy to Sudan Scot Gration is telling the opposite he is lying to you Or you America wants to continue the status-quo to let this regime continue on power as far as its cooperating with America on its war of Counter Terrorism. Moreover, the regime in Khartoum is killing its own people not the Americans.

    What a shame on the face of dirty politics?

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    • 16 December 2009 06:56, by johnmaker

      Mr.Dasodiko,

      Nothing too late for the CPA implemetation.What need is commitment.So let voice ourself as one in this web and tell the world the reality of what killed Durfurian and the southern.And let forget our differences.You will see the khartoum regime will fall.We sudanese need anything will removed so called NCP from the power only.

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    • 16 December 2009 06:58, by budi 23rd journalist

      Dear Southern People, its our high time to stay together and defend this land, we need not to talk of equatoria, Nuer and Dinka here, you people are naging me especially in this web. some of the people here with their funny names can incite war among us the southerners,

      i hate when one talk of either Dinka, Nuer, Equatorians Murle while at this critical moment, I hate being born in a community with cattles, they always talk death, killing etc, no good words is coming from somebody mouth that has good national message,

      when are we going to be patriotic to our people dispite their culktural diversity?

      I have never seen equatorians here talking badly about his fellow equatorian tribe, but Dinka and Nuer dominated this web with Bullshit talk of hatred, when are you guyz going to unleashed the cattle minded ideology full of tribalism and killing? why cannt we talk Jointly as sudanese than Abusing either Riak, kiir, pagan, wani iga etc?

      if you people continue like this, one day one time, you will be force to move out of Equatoria. We Equatorians hate people with bosting mine, we need to be bond together to see the future of this nation.

      i believe who ever write on net is somebody who has seen the black board but here, the same people who have gone to school are those that utter such bullshit tribalistic message here.

      Fuck all nuers and Dinka who want to destroy Southern Sudan by abusing leaders like Kiir riak etc, you people luck respect, we equatorians respect big people. how on earth can you just wish death to yor leader leading and forcing on the issues of referendum laws in Khartoum?

      You all are all stupid.

      Budi

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      • 16 December 2009 07:23, by Maguangdit

        Dear Budi 23rd Journalist or whatever you call yourself,

        That is how it begins. You began it now by attacking Dinka and Nuer and pretend that you Equatorians are the good people.

        You utterly missed the point since you are yourself emmersed in tribal politics of considering your Equatorians as non-tribalists and regionalists rather than nationalists.

        Your comments are not nationalist comments and you need to rephrase them if you want to be a nationalist instead of being a tribalist and a regionalist.

        You are a tribalist and I don`t want you to tell me that you were explaining to your audience you Equatorians do not attack anyone.

        It is good that you know we should deal with the issues of our national importance but it is bad that you did not dissociate yourself from tribalism.

        You have your Equatorians on this forum and if you read their posts, you will be surprised to learn that they are more tribalistic than anyone here. Mr. Big-Infamous-Illogic-Dog is one of the daily commentators herein.

        Have a merry Christmas brothers.

        PS: Mr. Big-Infamous-Illogic-Dog, I think you are following up your prescribed medical course by one of our professional WEBMD.
        Please, come to his clinic next time as he recommended and you will soon be fine.

        Thanks you, sir

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  • 16 December 2009 06:52, by Lorolokin

    This a well come news from the USA and the lawmakers in particullar,Keep up we are behind you.

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    • 16 December 2009 07:33, by padiit gaga

      Peace maker are bless by GOD.

      Lawless country does not know that human life is important is just like hamful Bacteria life instead of useful.Bashir has been killed many people from south and darefure no body says he wroung while he has killed innocent people exceple those who know the laws(USA).
      and thank you are highly welcome to Sudan.
      by padiit Gaga.

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      • 16 December 2009 10:02, by okucu pa lotinokwan

        The lawmaker in USA you are very correct in following all what is taking place in Sudan,let it not remain in words but be in action
        Many innocent has been killed in Darfur,upto now the killing is still contiuing,please American Hurry up the criminal president is finishing the childern of God in Darfur,may God give you more wisdom in dealing with the case of human right world wide.

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        • 16 December 2009 11:01, by telfajbago

          The lawmakers,taxpayers and the entire U.S policy makers should follow a attentively what is happening in Sudan;as President Obama’s policies towards Sudan has a lot of ambiguity and the country is sliding to war again.I believe that,the incentives and disincentives policies which is until now know only to a few people within the U.S administration,had helped to further radicalize Khartoum’s regime as they thought that,they can continue with their crimes,as long as narrow circles interests within Obama’s Administration is guaranteed.What is needed today,is a common stands from U.S administration that can be polarized into immediate action towards Khartoum and not sending an envoy back and forth wasting time to keep an irrevocable marriage.And even the ordinary person in Sudan knows that, the regime is just buying time,and soon the Islamic Jihadists will reveal their radical fangs.

          .

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          • 16 December 2009 14:14, by mohammed ali

            We don’t you invite them to recolonise them after 2011, it is good for you!

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            • 16 December 2009 16:24, by telfajbago

              Mohammed Ali

              When I make comments I do my uttermost not to be swayed by those trivial individuals who payed by the regime to defend it,unless I have to.Iam not inviting colonizers but your regime who lacks any human value tormented the masses to the extend that would prefer dealing with devils rather than with Khartoum’s Islamist.

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  • 16 December 2009 18:16, by Time1

    This is the right action by congress, more pressure on the NCP is required, this is make them to follow on with the CPA road map and commit to Darfur peace.

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    • 16 December 2009 21:38, by ismail

      It’s a very good step Congress have took,So at lest they can
      save the people’s life from Criminal Al bashir killing them like incest,

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