Thursday, June 26, 2008

Darfur petition

I just signed the following petition, being organised by Human Rights First:


Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Canada
President Nicolas Sarkozy, France
Chancellor Angela Merkel, Germany
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, Italy
Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, Japan
President Dmitry Medvedev, Russian Federation
Prime Minister Gordon Brown, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
President George W. Bush, United States of America

Your Excellencies,

This year's G8 Summit in Hokkaido Japan comes at a particularly perilous moment for both the people of Darfur and the whole of Sudan. Intensified violence in Darfur has resulted in more death and displacement. Recent fighting in Abyei suggests that the fragile Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between North and South Sudan is at risk as well.

Mindful of this, we urgently call on you and your fellow leaders of G8 countries to issue a strong public statement on Sudan/Darfur at the Hokkaido Summit that -- at a minimum -- addresses the following five areas:

*An immediate cessation of the violence. The statement should strongly condemn the renewed violence in Darfur and call on all parties to adhere to previous ceasefire agreements. Likewise, the statement should condemn the recent fighting in Abyei and call on the Government of Sudan and Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army to adhere to the ceasefire agreed upon as part of the CPA.

*Halting the transfers of arms. The statement should condemn ongoing violations of the arms embargo articulated in U.N. Security Council Resolution 1591. It should urge all states to stop all arms transfers that go, directly or indirectly, to Darfur in violation of Resolution 1591.

*Deployment of UNAMID. The statement should offer specific assistance from G8 members to ensure that UNAMID has the technical assistance and equipment necessary to fully deploy as quickly as possible.

*A reinvigorated peace process in Darfur and a recommitment to the CPA. The statement also should lay out a specific plan for how G8 governments will support efforts to establish a sustainable peace in Darfur and the full implementation of the CPA.

*Justice and accountability for atrocities committed. The statement should support existing and future efforts to pursue accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by all parties to the conflict in Darfur.

The Government of Sudan will be watching closely to see how the G8 reacts to the intensified violence in Darfur and the unraveling of the tenuous peace between the North and South. We urge the G8 to issue a strongly worded statement on Sudan/Darfur that clearly articulates the steps its members will take to help resolve the growing crisis. Anything less risks further emboldening the Government of Sudan.
If you feel inclined to sign it too, or to spread the word, you can access it at this link.

No comments: