Sudan has not Yet Met all Commitments towards Five Track Engagement Plan for Permanent US Sanction lifting
By Mahmoud A. Suleiman
This article coincides with the date set by the Executive Order (EO) issued by the former President of the United States Barack Obama to lift trade and economic sanctions on Sudan if the conditions are met by the ruling regime of the National Congress Party (NCP) led by the genocidal criminal and the fugitive from international justice and wanted by International Criminal Court (ICC) Marshall Omar Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir.
Former US President Barak Obama signed an Executive Order (EO) number 13761 on Friday 12 January 2017 easing but not eliminating sanctions against Sudan providing temporary relief from many U.S. sanctions against Sudan that have been in effect for almost 20 years. At the time, the eased sanctions will enable trade and investment transactions to resume with Sudan, a U.S.-designated terrorism sponsor whose leader has been indicted on crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide charges against the Sudanese civilian population in the region of Darfur. The White House announced the decision as part of a five-track engagement process. Nevertheless, former US President Obama built in a six-month waiting period before the benefits for Sudan go into effect. By July Wednesday 12, 2017 several U.S. agencies would have to affirm to the White House — which will be controlled by President-elect at the time Donald Trump — that Sudan is continuing taking positive steps before the sanctions would be eased. The five-track engagement process was set to include:
- a marked reduction in offensive military activity, culminating in a pledge to maintain a cessation of hostilities in conflict areas in Sudan
- steps toward the improvement of humanitarian access throughout Sudan,
- cooperation with the United States on addressing regional conflicts and the threat of terrorism
Obama indicated in his (EO) that the penalties being suspended by the policy change could be re-imposed if Sudan backtracks on the progress it has made. Furthermore, the (EO) order also directed the US government to produce an annual report on whether Sudan was upholding the positive steps it has taken. Expectedly, Human Rights Watch called the decision “inexplicable” and said Sudan continues committing war crimes and crimes against humanity. “The Obama administration is sending the worst possible message to Sudan and other repressive governments: If you cooperate on counterterrorism, then all abuses — including by your president — will be ignored,” said the group’s Africa director, Leslie Lefkow.
Officials in the Former US President Obama said the administration was keeping in place the broad set of economic and financial sanctions Sudan faces as a result of its “state sponsor of terrorism” designation. It is noteworthy that the US State Department first labeled Sudan a terrorism sponsor in 1993. Among the terrorist groups Sudan harbored included Osama bin Laden, founder of Al-Qaeda that prompted the US President Bill Clinton to launch airstrikes on Al-Shifa pharmaceutical factory in Khartoum in On 20 August 1998, the factory was destroyed in cruise missile strikes launched by the United States military allegedly in retaliation for the truck bomb attacks on its embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya on 7 August 1998.
So far, President Donald Trump hasn’t commented publicly about Sudan sanctions. But during the campaign, Walid Phares, who advised Trump on national security issues, suggested Trump was opposed to lifting sanctions on Sudan. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2017/01/13/obama-executive-order-easing-sanctions-sudan/96543266/
The human rights community has long blasted Khartoum government for its conduct in Darfur and treatment of various ethnic groups.
The Bipartisan Group of Lawmakers Urge White House to Delay Sudan Sanctions Relief.
U.S. Congressmen Randy Hultgren (R-IL) and Jim McGovern (D-MA), co-chairs of the bipartisan Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, and Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA), and Tom Rooney (R-FL) led a bipartisan letter this week calling on President Trump to delay lifting sanctions on Sudan for one year or until the Trump Administration has fully staffed the State Department and National Security Council and named a Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan who can conduct a thorough and objective review. The lawmakers specifically cite unimpeded humanitarian access and cessation of hostilities in Sudan as key priorities where progress must be made for sanctions relief to be considered.
George Clooney and John Prendergast say An American Lobbying Firm Is Helping Sudan Vile Regime led by Bashir http://time.com/4847706/george-clooney-sudan-lobbying/
On Jul 06, 2017 George Clooney and John Prendergast, reported in an article http://time.com/4847706/george-clooney-sudan-lobbying/
Indicating that earlier this summer, K Street law and lobbying firm Squire Patton Boggs inked a contract with the Sudanese government aimed at removing U.S. sanctions on that regime. The firm will be paid $40,000 a month by a government that’s on the U.S. state sponsors of terror list, with a head of state, Omar al-Bashir, wanted for genocide by the International Criminal Court (ICC). In their article, George Clooney and John Prendergast said that: (Over the last four administrations, Congress has led bipartisan U.S. efforts to isolate the Sudan regime. So it’s surprising that Squire Patton Boggs, a firm that includes in its senior ranks former House Speaker John Boehner and former senators Trent Lott and John Breaux, has taken on this account. Given the exemplary service these men have performed for our country, it must mean that they simply don’t know. Either they don’t know that their firm is taking $40,000 a month from the government of Sudan, or they don’t know what this regime has done.
I have added the following statements to the foregoing:
The “cash-for-Lobbying affair” deserves condemnation in the strongest terms.
It is regrettable that the US Company involved itself in the scandal for Sudan’s NCP regime Sanction Lifting. The American company owned by former Congressmen interfered in the lifting the decades long trade and financial sanctions on the former National Islamic Front (NIF) and the current National Congress Party (NCP) genocidal regime which ruled Sudan with iron fist and terror and colluding with it the NCP is nothing but scandalous. The way in which these payments were received and concealed fell well below the standards expected of company owned by former members of the US Congress. This obviously must have to be seen as a disingenuous attempt at concealment. Lies told by an American Firm in lieu of bribes paid and the result is fateful Peril of NCP regime getting strengthened to commit more atrocious crimes against civilian populations in Darfur. An avalanche of condemnation is justified for the lobbying company by the disenfranchised people of Sudan against such an unacceptable scandal from a company owned by former members in the US Congress. So far evidence has shown that the company has solicited business for the NCP regime in expectation of commission payments monthly amounting to thousands of US$. The conduct of the owners of the Company has fell seriously below the standards which the Congress is entitled to expect and if they had still been Members the Congress would have recommend a substantial period of suspension from the service of the House. It seemed a subterfuge on the part of the company to keep a blind eye on the cause of people surviving from an ordeal where they were subjected to crimes of genocide in the Western region of Darfur. The company hey had tried to influence US Administration of President Donald Trump to lift the decades-long trade and economic sanction imposed by former President Bill Clinton in 1997 in exchange for money paid by the NCP regime, led by the genocidal criminal, fugitive from international justice indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague in the Netherlands, Omer Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir.
Regarding the claim of low intensity of rebellion in the Darfur region is a (GoS) fabrication and is denied by evidence and refuted by the fierce fighting erupted between the militias of the Rapid Support Force (RSF) with the Sudan Liberation Army/ Movement (SLA/M) led by Minni Minnawi in May 2017 in the states of North, South and Central Darfur. Moreover, on the human rights and general freedom issue, the NCP security apparatus continues arresting journalists and human right defenders and subjecting them in prisons where arbitrary measures of torture are carried on by the notorious so-called National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS). Worse is the authority bestowed by al-Bashir on the former Janjaweed tribal militia, cloned and renamed the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) led by Mohammed Hamdan Dagolo, commonly known as “Hemeti. Hemeti is a former Janjaweed Commander, now promoted to a Lieutenant General. It is noteworthy that the RSF leader receives orders from President Omer al-Bashir directly and in coordination with the security apparatus (NISS), but it is by no means subordinate to the formal Sudanese Army, the Sudan Armed Force (SAF)!
The question now is whether the administration of President Donald Trump will listen to the voice of reason and make the right decision to continue the sanctions imposed on the NCP ruling regime, which remains in violation of all the five conditions contained in the Executive Order issued by his predecessor Barack Obama?
Tom Allen the English comedian, actor, and writer has been quoted as saying: (Despite the increase in world attention toward Sudan in the past months, the genocide in Darfur has continued without any serious attempt by the Sudanese government to do what governments primarily exist to do, protect their citizens.)
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/darfur.html
Dr. Mahmoud A. Suleiman is an author, columnist and a blogger. His blog is https://thussudan.wordpress.com/