Bureau of African Affairs
September 21, 2004
Sudan: Darfur Policy
[PDF option: 79 KB]
Saving lives in Darfur by ending the violence and ensuring delivery of humanitarian assistance is a top priority for the United States. Secretary Powell traveled to Darfur in June to press the Government of Sudan to take actions to halt the violence and atrocities, allow unrestricted humanitarian access, cooperate fully with cease-fire and international monitoring, participate in political talks with the Darfur rebels, and hold accountable those most responsible for the atrocities. The U.S. will not normalize relations with Sudan until the situation in Darfur is satisfactorily addressed.
Government-backed Arab Jingaweit militias have burned crops, killed cattle, and committed atrocious violations of human rights on civilian populations in Darfur. The situation is dire – an estimated 1.1 million people are displaced, a million more are at risk, and nearly 200,000 have taken refuge in neighboring Chad. Food shortages and disease outbreaks threaten to increase the death toll if circumstances are unchanged.
The United States played a leading role in brokering the April cease-fire between the Government of Sudan and rebel groups in Darfur. The parties also agreed to allow international monitoring and participate in political talks with the Darfur opposition under the auspices of the African Union. Currently, 24 AU cease-fire monitors are in place, with plans to increase to over 100 along with 200-300 troops to protect them.
Secretary Powell’s Visit
Secretary Powell, accompanied by USAID Administrator Andrew Natsios, traveled to Sudan, including Darfur, on June 29-30, 2004. After visiting the Abu Shouk displaced persons camp, the Secretary urged the government to fulfill a list of specific actions to alleviate the suffering and end the violence. The U.S. is following the government’s response closely.
UN Security Council Resolution
We welcome the United Nations Security Council's adoption of Resolution 1564 on September 18. It will help alleviate the suffering of the people of Darfur and keep the pressure on the Government of Sudan to fulfill its commitments. The U.S. successfully led the effort to get the Council to take action. The result is broad support for a strong resolution, one that responds to the UN's call for urgent action, and the African Union's call for international backing of its leadership efforts. Resolution 1564 will serve to press the Government of Sudan to live up to its commitments to end the violence. It also urges the international community to fulfill its pledges of humanitarian assistance and to support the African Union's undertaking an expanded and proactive monitoring mission in Darfur.
The United States is the largest donor of humanitarian aid to Darfur, having pledged $299 million (through next year) of which $138.5 million has so far been obligated/spent.
North-South Peace Talks
The United States continues to provide support to the ongoing negotiations between the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement. These negotiations are related to the situation in Darfur since no comprehensive peace agreement can be reliably implemented while violence continues in Darfur.
State - http://www.state.gov/p/af/ci/su/
USAID - http://www.usaid.gov/locations/sub-saharan_africa/sudan/darfur.html