President George W. Bush announced immediate sanctions against the Sudanese government on Tuesday for its refusal to stop the killing in Darfur, which is in western Sudan.
The United States will sanction 30 companies owned or controlled by the Sudanese government, and a company that transports weapons to government and militia forces in Darfur. It will also block the assets of two Sudanese officials and one Darfurian rebel leader, who are responsible for violence in Darfur. The U.S. has pledge to work for a UN Security Council resolution to enforce a no-fly zone and an arms embargo on Sudan.
The Institute on Religion & Democracy (IRD) is applauding the U.S. government for its response to this international crisis situation.
"Once again, the United States has taken the lead where other nations have not, as well as the United Nations,” says the IRD’s Faith McDonnell, director of the Church Alliance for a New Sudan.
McDonnell recognizes that criticisms have been laid against the U.S. for the delay, but says that both the UN and U.S. congressional leaders asked Bush to delay so that they might try a diplomatic approach with the regime.
McDonnell says the sanctions may not be all activists were expecting but they’re a good start and are appreciated by the Sudanese.
Some 300,000 Darfurian men, women, and children have died, and millions have been displaced since the crisis began about 10 years ago. This is the second phase of the genocide. The first phase claimed over two million lives in Southern Sudan and the Nuba Mountains, says the IRD.