Washington, D.C. (February 28, 2013) -- Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) today joined other members of Congress and international Parliamentarians in a letter commemorating the 10 years since the beginning of the conflict in Darfur and demanding renewed attention within the United Nations framework to address the humanitarian crisis in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile.
The letter was sent by 98 political leaders in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia to each of their respective Foreign Secretaries, including Secretary of State John Kerry.
The demands in the letter included:
*An end to aerial bombardment and other attacks against civilians in Sudan, which have continued in Darfur and increased in intensity over the past year, particularly in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile;
*Urgently address the humanitarian situation in Southern Kordofan, Blue Nile and Darfur;
*Ensure a comprehensive approach to ending Sudan's conflicts, focusing on the long-standing need for peaceful and inclusive democratic transformation;
*Take a leadership role in ensuring that those responsible for grave violations of international human rights and humanitarian law are held accountable;
*Encourage countries with close political and/or economic ties with Khartoum to join in pushing for the aforementioned actions.
"Ten years ago this month, the Sudanese government, headed by Omar Bashir, embarked on a campaign of violence in Darfur in which 300,000 people were killed," Wolf said. "The world says, "Never Again,' and yet in the face of mounting atrocities in Sudan today, where is the outrage? History must not be allowed to repeat itself. We must stand up for the people of Sudan."
For years, Wolf has been a champion for human rights in Sudan as co-chairman of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission and as a member of the House State Foreign Operations Appropriations subcommittee, which funds the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS), the World Food Program, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Wolf was the first member of Congress to visit Darfur. He most recently traveled to South Sudan in February 2012. Last month, he wrote Kerry, asking him to appoint a new special envoy to Sudan in order to reinvigorate the U.S. approach to Sudan and South Sudan.
The full text of the letter can be found below: