John Prendergast

Getting Specific About Accountability in Sudan

Date: 
Sep 24, 2010

The Huffington Post: Getting Specific About Accountability in Sudan

By: John Prendergast, Co-authored by: Ashley Benner

It has become almost obligatory for policy-makers and pundits to talk about accountability and breaking the cycle of impunity. However, when it comes to specific action, it has been a long time since the United States has done anything to support real accountability and justice on the ground in Sudan. With the South Sudan and Abyei referenda scheduled for January 9 -- less than four months from now -- and with the accompanying potential for renewed war and human rights violations, the U.S. must commit to doing all it can to prevent war and secure justice in Sudan.
 

Keeping reading this Huffington Post article.

Avoiding the Train Wreck in Sudan: U.S. Leverage for Peace

As part of its Sudan Working Group Series, the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars released today a paper entitled, “Avoiding the Train Wreck in Sudan: U.S. Leverage for Peace,” as part of a two-piece publication examining international engagement in Sudan.

Report: What’s Wrong with U.S. Policy Toward Sudan, and How to Fix It

Date: 
Jul 20, 2010
Author: 
John Prendergast

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Jonathan Hutson, jhutson@enoughproject.org, +1-202-386-1618
 

Report: What's Wrong with U.S. Policy Toward Sudan, and How to Fix It

WASHINGTON, D.C. -The Enough Project has released a new report that argues that U.S. policy is not contributing in a meaningful way to creating peace and justice in Sudan, and suggests alternative steps that officials can take to make peace in Sudan a reality.

With only six months until the self-determination referenda for South Sudan and Abyei, the report describes how U.S. policymakers have failed to act decisively to prevent a return to war between North and South Sudan, or to resolve the escalating conflict in Darfur.

In the report, titled, “What’s Wrong with U.S. Policy Toward Sudan, and How to Fix It,” Enough Co-founder John Prendergast argues that the words and actions of U.S. officials have undermined the administration’s influence in Sudan, just when its efforts are needed most.

“The time has come for an urgent rethink of how the United States can contribute to peace in Sudan now, building on the lessons of the recent past,” writes Prendergast.

The report outlines four specific areas where U.S. policy is off course. These include a flawed peace process in Darfur, a hands-off approach to critical negotiations to prevent renewed North-South war, the role of the Unites States in building leverage for peace, and justice as an essential component of sustainable peace.

“The United States made a major contribution to peace-making in Sudan in the past decade,” argues Prendergast. “Sadly, the Obama administration is not building on the lessons of past success and thus is not positioning itself to play the role that is needed in averting all-out war in 2011.”

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Enough is a project of the Center for American Progress to end genocide and crimes against humanity. Founded in 2007, the Enough Project focuses on crises in Sudan, eastern Congo, and areas of Africa affected by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Enough’s strategy papers and briefings provide sharp field analysis and targeted policy recommendations based on a “3P” crisis response strategy: promoting durable peace, providing civilian protection, and punishing perpetrators of atrocities. Enough works with concerned citizens, advocates, and policy makers to prevent, mitigate, and resolve these crises. For more information, please visit www.enoughproject.org.

 

 

What's Wrong with U.S. Policy toward Sudan, and How to Fix It

The time has come for an urgent rethink of how the United States can contribute to peace in Sudan now, building on the lessons of the recent past.

U.S. Congress Passes Anti-LRA Bill - Daily Monitor

Date: 
May 13, 2010
The U.S. Congress has passed a bill calling upon the administration of President Barack Obama to lead international efforts to end the threat to civilians posed by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). The bill was passed late yesterday. 
 

A joint statement from US-based organisations, The Enough Project, Resolve Uganda and Invisible Children, says the legislation demonstrates Americans' broad and deep determination to see new action from President Obama to help arrest Joseph Kony and other top LRA commanders. The statement says the bill provides support to disarm and disband Kony’s militia, and to restore stability to those areas of Africa that have been terrorised by the LRA. 

Keep reading at the Daily Monitor.

In Wake of Rigged Election, Rights Groups Call on White House to Take Firm Stance to Ensure Peace and Justice in Sudan

Date: 
Apr 20, 2010
Author: 
Jonathan Hutson

Contacts:
Jonathan Hutson, the Enough Project, 202-386-1618, jhutson@enoughproject.org
Andrea Clarke, Save Darfur Coalition, 202-460-6756, andrea@savedarfur.org
Susan Morgan, Investors Against Genocide, 617-797-0451, susan@paxcommunications.org
Suzanne Offen, American Jewish World Service, 240- 620- 5207, soffen@ajws.org

 

IN WAKE OF RIGGED ELECTION, RIGHTS GROUPS CALL ON WHITE HOUSE TO TAKE FIRM STANCE TO ENSURE PEACE AND JUSTICE IN SUDAN

U.S. Should Increase Pressure on Recalcitrant Actors To Reduce Risk of Full-Scale War, as Per Sudan Policy

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As the White House issued a statement that Sudan’s recent elections fell short of international standards and that political rights and freedoms were violated, leading human rights groups are calling on the Obama Administration to implement a policy of pressure and consequences to reduce the risk of full-scale war and prevent further manipulation by spoilers in Khartoum during the run-up to the January 2011 referendum on independence for Southern Sudan.

Mark Lotwis, Acting President, Save Darfur Coalition: “The Obama administration’s strategy for Sudan promised to hold Sudan’s regime accountable for its actions on the ground. Yet today’s statement neglects to assign responsibility and consequences for the failure of dictator Omar al-Bashir to create the conditions for a free and fair election. President Obama must lead world leaders to not recognize Bashir as a legitimately elected leader and to press for meaningful steps towards political freedom in Sudan in the run up to next year’s referendum to determine independence for South Sudan.”

John Prendergast, Enough: “Each time the Obama administration does not stand on principle and build international consequences for further abuses of human and civil rights, a powerful signal is sent to the Sudanese parties that fulfillment of commitments and agreements is not important. Unless President Obama implements his own stated policy of imposing consequences for unmet benchmarks, the potential increases for obstructions around the referendum and Darfur peace negotiations and thus a return to full-scale national war. The stakes continue to get higher in Sudan, and the administration's bar for moving forward continues to get lower."

Ruth Messinger, President, American Jewish World Service: “The elections are over and fundamentally little has changed. Darfur remains without a viable peace process, a host of issues remain unresolved ahead of the referendum in January and the NCP government once again confirmed its refusal to allow a true democratic transformation in Sudan. The administration must demonstrate that peace in Sudan is a priority worthy of the continued personal attention of the President, Vice President and Secretary of State."

Gabriel Stauring, Director, Stop Genocide Now: “Marginalized people in Sudan are being left behind and unprotected, in this rush to meet a time-line. U.S. Sudan policy is, in effect, promoting abuses and impunity, when it does not go beyond statements of regret and move towards true consequences and pressures. As we have seen with recent attacks in the Jebel Marra region of Darfur where hundreds died and thousands were displaced, real lives are at stake, and regrets do not do the job.

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The Save Darfur Coalition is an alliance of more than 190 faith-based, advocacy and human rights organizations – raises public awareness about the ongoing crisis in Darfur and mobilizes a unified response to promote peace throughout the Darfur region and all of Sudan. The coalition’s member organizations represent 130 million people of all ages, races, religions and political affiliations united together to help the people of Sudan. Please join the movement at www.SaveDarfur.org.

Enough is a project of the Center for American Progress to end genocide and crimes against humanity. Founded in 2007, Enough focuses on crises in Sudan, Chad, eastern Congo, northern Uganda, Somalia, and Zimbabwe. Enough’s strategy papers and briefings provide sharp field analysis and targeted policy recommendations based on a “3P” crisis response strategy: promoting durable peace, providing civilian protection, and punishing perpetrators of atrocities. Enough works with concerned citizens, advocates, and policy makers to prevent, mitigate, and resolve these crises. For more information, visit www.enoughproject.org.

Stop Genocide Now is a grassroots community dedicated to working to protect populations in grave danger of violence, death and displacement resulting from genocide. Through active education, advocacy and policy change SGN resolves to change the way the world responds to genocide. SGN is currently focused on creating awareness and action to stop the genocide in Darfur and deal appropriately with its aftermath. All of our projects focus on and utilize the strength and power in grassroots connectivity. For more information, please visit www.stopgenocidenow.org
 

American Jewish World Service is an international development organization motivated by Judaism's imperative to pursue justice. AJWS is dedicated to alleviating poverty, hunger and disease among the people of the developing world regardless of race, religion or nationality. Through grants to grassroots organizations, volunteer service, advocacy and education, AJWS fosters civil society, sustainable development and human rights for all people, while promoting the values and responsibilities of global citizenship within the Jewish community. www.ajws.org

 

As Votes Are Counted Following Sudan Election, Advocacy Groups Call on Obama Administration Not to Legitimize the Results

Date: 
Apr 16, 2010

Sudan Now Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Contacts:
Jonathan Hutson, the Enough Project,
202-386-1618, jhutson@enoughproject.org
Mame Annan-Brown, Genocide Intervention Network, 347-564-2936, annan-brown@genocideintervention.net
Andrea Clarke, Save Darfur Coalition, 202-460-6756,andrea@savedarfur.org
Julia Thornton, Humanity United, 650-587-2030, jthornton@humanityunited.org

 
Media Release: As Votes Are Counted Following Sudan Election, Advocacy Groups Call on Obama Administration Not to Legitimize the Results
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – As the vote count begins in Sudan amid continued reports of electoral rigging and widespread political oppression, leading human rights organizations call on the Obama administration to be honest with itself, the Sudanese people and the international community in evaluating the results.
 
Mia Farrow, Actress and Human Rights Advocate, states: "The incumbent Sudanese president is an indicted war criminal. He threatened to slice off the fingers of election observers. The international community doesn't need a pile of bloody fingers to be able to point to the truth that this election is not free or fair."
 
The following advocacy group leaders are available for weekend interviews:
 
Mark Lotwis, Acting President, Save Darfur Coalition: ”Rather than confronting Sudan's regime and insisting on free and fair elections, the Obama administration and the international community has thus far gone silent in the face of voter intimidation, media censorship, and gross electoral irregularities. As attention moves toward the 2011 referendum, U.S. Special Envoy Gration must make respect for human rights a cornerstone of his engagement with all parties in Sudan.” 

Sam Bell, Executive Director, Genocide Intervention Network: "The national elections are a wasted opportunity. Closing its eyes to widespread irregularities in the run up to the elections, the international community will encourage future manipulation of democratic process and violation of international agreements by Sudan's ruling party."


John Prendergast, Co-founder of the Enough Project at Center for American Progress: "As bad as the elections are, the elections are a real diversion from the issues that are going to determine whether Sudan goes back to full-scale, national war or not. By not responding robustly to the multiple violations of the electoral process, the U.S. sends a signal that emboldens the ruling National Congress Party and demoralizes the Sudanese people. We're not responding to the resurrection of the Lord's Resistance Army. We're not responding to the major offensive in Darfur, in Jebel Marra over the last couple of months that led to so many people being killed and displaced. We're not responding to the non-implementation of key provisions of the CPA, the north/south peace agreement, like border demarcation. The Obama administration rolled out the president's policy in October 2009, promising benchmarks, deputy reviews and consequences. Half a year later, we've got no sign of benchmarks. We have had one, inconclusive deputies' meeting and no consequences for all these violations.”
Please note: Photography and broadcast quality recent b-roll from IDP camps are now available for general use at http://bit.ly/bgjPYr. Photography and video of Monday’s student protest at the State Department is available at http://bit.ly/c4ueOband http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBvxAaXMfUU.
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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.

Mia Farrow, John Prendergast and Osman Hummaida featured in press briefing on Sudan election by human rights organizations

Date: 
Apr 13, 2010

 Read the full transcript here

Contact:
Jonathan Hutson, the Enough Project, 202-386-1618, jhutson@enoughproject.org
Mame Annan-Brown, Genocide Intervention Network, 347-564-2936, annan-brown@genocideintervention.net
Andrea Clarke, Save Darfur Coalition, 202 460 6756, andrea@savedarfur.org
Julia Thornton, Humanity United, 650-587-2030, jthornton@humanityunited.org
Susan Morgan, Investors Against Genocide, 617-797-0451, susan@paxcommunications.org

Please note: Link to audio tape of call will be available at approximately 1 PM ET. Photography and broadcast quality recent b-roll from IDP camps are now available for general use a http://media.savedarfur.org/save-darfur-media-epk-download and http://www.flickr.com/photos/savedarfur/sets/72157623816650366/. Photography of Monday’s student protest at the State Department is available at http://www.flickr.com/photos/genocideintervention/sets/72157623715411721

ADVISORY: Mia Farrow, John Prendergast and Osman Hummaida featured in press briefing on Sudan election by human rights organizations

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In an effort to provide journalists with timely commentary on the latest developments in the pivotal Sudan elections, leading human rights organizations have launched a series of press briefings hosted by Sudan Now, a campaign led by several of the participants. Wednesday’s call will include Mia Farrow, actress and Sudan advocate; John Prendergast, Co-founder of the Enough Project; and Osman Hummaida, Executive Director of the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies, a group that has been tracking violations of electoral procedure and incidents of irregularities committed by the National Elections Commission (NEC) and officials present at polling centers.

Sudan Now’s press calls are being held each day this week at 10 a.m. Eastern Time. The calls are largely devoted to questions from journalists after very brief opening statements from the guest speakers. Additional organizations participating in Wednesday’s call include the Save Darfur Coalition, the Enough Project at the Center for American Progress, Genocide Intervention Network, and Investors Against Genocide.

According to the Sudan Now campaign, the current implementation of the U.S. policy on Sudan has not addressed a number of extremely concerning developments including clear indications that the national election is neither free nor fair, ongoing government attacks that have killed hundreds and displaced thousands in recent months, and ongoing obstruction by the Government of Sudan in access for aid workers and UN investigators to Darfur.

WHEN:
Wednesday, April 14 through Friday, April 15 at 10 a.m. Eastern Time (daily)

WHO:
Mia Farrow, Actress and human rights advocate
John Prendergast, Cofounder, the Enough Project at the Center for American Progress
Osman Hummaida, Executive Director, African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies
Sam Bell, Executive Director, Genocide Intervention Network
Eric Cohen, Chairperson, Investors Against Genocide

DIAL IN NUMBER:
US/Canada Dial-in #: (877) 210-8943 – Conference ID # 68487901
Int'l/Local Dial-In #: (706) 902-0621 – Conference ID # 68487901

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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.

Sudan: U.S. Support of Elections Draws Criticism

Date: 
Apr 5, 2010
Author: 
Mohammed A. Salih

Sudan: U.S. Support of Elections Draws Criticism

Mohammed A. Salih

5 April 2010

Washington — Recent remarks by the U.S. envoy to Sudan predicting credible elections have led to criticism both here and in Sudan over Washington's policy toward the African nation.

The statement by Scott Gration that Sudan's elections will be as "free and fair as possible" came amid an extensive boycott of the presidential elections by major opposition parties in Africa's largest country.

Last week, President Omar al-Bashir's main challenger, Yassir Arman, boycotted the presidential elections due to security fears, the continued conflict in Darfur and irregularities in the electoral process. Arman was backed by the south Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), a Christian-dominated group that fought the Sudanese government during what is known as the second Sudanese civil war that lasted for 22 years.

The civil war ended in 2005 when the SPLM and the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir signed a Comprehensive Peace Agreement in Kenya.

Sudanese will cast their ballots from Apr. 11 to 13 in presidential, parliamentary and municipal elections, the first in more than 20 years.

Despite a widespread opposition boycott of the polls, the U.S. envoy to Sudan has come out publicly in defence of the elections.

"They (electoral commission members) have given me confidence that the elections will start on time and they would be as free and as fair as possible," said Gration in Sudan's capital Khartoum on Saturday.

"These people have gone to great lengths to ensure that the people of Sudan will have access to polling places and that the procedures and processes will ensure transparency," he said.

Read more.

Congressman Royce challenges top Africa diplomat on LRA

Date: 
Mar 27, 2010

Congressman Royce challenges top Africa diplomat on LRA

March 27th, 2010 by michael in: Campaign Watch, Main Site

On Thursday, at a House of Representatives hearing on United States policy toward Africa, Representative Ed Royce (R-CA) challenged the US' top Africa diplomat about what our country is doing to prevent the LRA from gaining renewed support from their old patrons in the Sudanese government. A recent report by our colleagues at Enough Project alleged that a group of LRA has moved into South Darfur with protection from the Sudanese government.

Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson responded, "I have to say that Kony has been elusive to the Ugandan military as Osama bin Laden has been to allied operations in the Afghan-Pakistan area. It is very difficult terrain that he is operating in, it is very difficult to go after him. The Ugandans have made a real effort, but it has been real difficult."

Calls for increased investment from the United States in attaining LRA leader Joseph Kony's apprehension have been increasing. A spokesperson for the International Criminal Court last week called for American leadership to arrest Kony, who is wanted for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Rep Royce (R-CA)

"In the case of Joseph Kony in Uganda, he is a militia leader surrounded by armed men. We need ... the operational support of countries like the U.S., to the DRC, to Uganda, to the Central African Republic, to assist them in mounting an operation to arrest him. They have the will -- so it's a totally legitimate operation, politically, legally -- but they need this kind of assistance. And the U.S. has to be the leader," said Beatrice Le Fraper Du Hellen, special adviser to the prosecutor at the ICC.

Read more.

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