US Lawmakers Explore Enhanced Policy for Sudan

Richard Lugar, ranking Republican, and John Kerry, chairman of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Photo by: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff / CC BY 2.0 Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff CC BY 2.0

U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-Mass.) hopes to draft a bill that would better address the genocide in Sudan by putting in place a comprehensive peace agreement.

Kerry, in his statement at the May 12 hearing, intends to accelerate contingency planning and build U.S. capacity to address the difficulties faced by the victims of the crisis in Africa’s largest country.

Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.) supported Kerry’s point.

“A peace agreement in Darfur is distant and is clouded by uncertainty surrounding the outcome of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement process,” Lugar said. “Failure of the peace agreement between North and South could have catastrophic consequences for all of Sudan.”

In his testimony before the committee, Scott Gration, the U.S. special envoy to Sudan, delved on the road to the referenda in January 2011.

“A definitive end to conflict, gross human rights abuses, and genocide in Darfur remains a key strategic objective, as made clear in the U.S. Strategy on Sudan,” Gration said.

The civil war in Darfur began in 2003, when the Sudan Liberation Army and Justice and Equality Movement accused the government of oppressing black Africans in favor of Arabs. 

About the author

  • Chiden Balmes

    Chiden, a correspondent based in Seoul, focuses on computer-assisted reporting to provide international development professionals with practical business and career information. He also contributes to the Development Newswire and the Global Development Briefing, two of the world's highest-circulation development publications.