FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
With fewer than 120 days before the referenda on Southern secession and the future of Abyei, Sudan has entered a critical make-or-break period. U.S. strategic priorities in Sudan remain: full and timely implementation of the North-South Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) that results in a peaceful post-2011 Sudan, or an orderly path toward two separate and viable states at peace with each other; a definitive end to conflict, gross human rights abuses, and genocide in Darfur and that Sudan does not again become a safe haven for international terrorists.
During this critical period, the Obama Administration is intensifying its work to implement its Sudan strategy by: elevating diplomatic efforts; working with other nations, the UN, and other regional and international organizations to help prepare for the referenda; making significant investments on the ground to help prepare for what happens after the referenda, and presenting the parties concrete steps that the United States will take contingent on concrete achievements on the ground. These actions support the Sudan strategy launched by the Obama Administration in October 2009.
While it is up to the political leaders in Sudan to decide whether they are choosing the path of compromise or confrontation, peace or war, the Obama Administration is pressing the parties to facilitate the peaceful and on-time conduct of the referenda, to respect their results, to resolve key remaining post-referenda issues, and for the Government of Sudan to end the conflict in Darfur.
This weekend, President Obama’s Special Envoy, Scott Gration, undertook his 20th trip to the region. In meetings in Khartoum, he made clear to the Sudanese Government that normalization of relations with the United States depends on the full implementation of the CPA and peace and accountability in Darfur. In meetings in Juba, Special Envoy Gration likewise set forth our clear expectations of the Government of Southern Sudan as well as the potential incentives that exist should they complete their obligations under the CPA. He also made clear that there are a range of consequences that will be deployed, if the situation in Sudan deteriorates or fails to make progress, including additional sanctions.
SPECIAL ENVOY GRATION’S MEETINGS IN SUDAN:
Getting to full normalization – including lifting of sanctions against the Government of Sudan; rescission of State Sponsors of Terrorism designation consistent with the evidence and legal criteria provided in the relevant statutes; supporting implementation of debt relief consistent with internationally agreed processes, and access to multilateral and bilateral assistance (consistent with our laws and requirements and with the rules and regulations of the international financial institutions) – will require a comprehensive peace agreement in Darfur that is credibly implemented, a sustained improvement in security, humanitarian access, and services that improve living conditions on the ground, full cooperation with UNAMID, a cessation of all support for international terrorism, and efforts to achieve accountability, justice and reconciliation. The relevant terms in U.S. law, such as the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act, as well as the terms of relevant UN Security Council Resolutions must also be met.
The Obama Administration is intensifying work to mobilize a robust multilateral response so that the world stands united in contributing resources on the ground, in supporting full implementation of the CPA, and in helping prevent a return to war in Sudan.
INVESTMENTS ON THE GROUND:
The United States is making significant investments on the ground to help prepare for what will come after the referenda. For example, the United States:
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