The mission to end the deadly Lord’s Resistance Army, or LRA, rebel group is regaining momentum. This report examines the impact of U.S. special forces on the counter-LRA mission and recommends steps forward in light of the restart of offensive operations, which were suspended due to the violent coup in the Central African Republic and the Obama administration's recent committement to extend the mission into 2014.
Human Rights Groups Urge NYC Hotels to Deny Sudanese President Bashir Accomodations
Six major human rights groups representing hundreds of thousands of supporters released a letter today to the Hotel Association of New York City, urging all of their 260 member hotels in the greater metro region to deny Sudanese President Bashir accommodations.
At a news conference on Sunday, September 22, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir announced that he reserved his flights and booked a hotel in New York City for his visit to the United Nations General Assembly. President Bashir is sought by International Criminal Court on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity for his actions in Darfur.
The groups strongly urge the Hotel Association and all of its members to deny any request for accommodations for President Bashir. Allowing Bashir into any hotel sends the wrong message to the guests, staff and neighbors and most importantly, would be a huge disgrace to the victims of the genocide in Darfur.
John Prendergast, Enough Project Co-Founder said:
"If Bashir does come to New York, at a minimum businesses that profit from his stay should pay a price. Whatever hotel decides to let him stay will face reputational damage and voluntary boycotts from conscientious people from all over the United States. For someone implicated in genocide, there should be no room at the inn."
On Monday, the U.S. State Department confirmed reports that Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, a war criminal indicted by the International Criminal Court for genocide and crimes against humanity, had applied for a U.S. visa with the intent of attending the U.N. General Assembly Meeting in New York next week. Read More »
While the recent 50th anniversary commemoration of the "March on Washington" to demand rights for African Americans focused attention on Martin Luther King, Jr.'s unfinished domestic agenda in the United States, Dr. King was also strongly committed to a global human rights movement, particularly related to Africa. Read More »
This dispatch is based on research and interviews conducted by the author in Kampala, Uganda between September 11–18, 2013 at the site of Kampala Peace Talks between the Government of Congo and the M23. It is part of an ongoing Enough Project series on issues related to the peace process in Congo and the Great Lakes region.
The U.S. was put in a difficult diplomatic position this week as ICC indictee and Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir announced his intent to attend the United Nations General Assembly in New York. An agreement between the U.S. and the UN legally requires the U.S. to issue Bashir a visa and facilitate his travel. Although it might seem like restrictive international laws have created this problem, some activists see law as also offering the solution. Read More »