State Department Welcomes Officials Implicated in Darfur Genocide

Sudanese Government Officials to Attend National Prayer Breakfast Commemorating Centennial of Armenian Genocide Today

United to End Genocide blasted the Obama Administration today for welcoming two Sudanese government officials implicated in the Darfur genocide and other atrocities being committed in Sudan. The Foreign Minister of Sudan and a top advisor to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir – who is wanted for genocide by the International Criminal Court – will participate in a commemoration of the Armenian genocide at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday morning.

The group’s President, former U.S. Congressman Tom Andrews said:

“Welcoming leaders of a genocidal regime to the U.S. is both outrageous and dangerous. Their presence at an event commemorating the Armenian genocide is abhorrent. It is bad enough that President Obama refuses to recognize a genocide that occurred one hundred years ago in Armenia. Now his administration is welcoming those with blood on their hands for the genocide and mass atrocities that continue in Sudan. The President should apologize to the many victims of this genocidal regime.

For far too long, President Obama has been silent on the atrocities in Darfur and across Sudan. By ignoring the violence and postponing justice, conditions have gotten much worse for the victims of the genocidal regime of Omar al-Bashir. Now, by laying out a welcome mat and taking steps to normalize relations, the administration is giving a green light for further atrocities.”

Background: Foreign Minister Ali Karti is not only in the Sudanese government, but also implicated directly in atrocities committed in Sudan. Karti was head of the Popular Defense Forces that oversaw atrocities against the people of the Nuba Mountains in the 1990s and has been an influential part of the government. Ibrahim Ghandour, a top advisor to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, will be meeting with State Department and White House officials. The Government of Sudan has recently bombed civilians in Darfur, blocked the investigation of a reported mass rape of over 200 Darfuri women, and, in the midst of the sharpest increase in violence in years, called for the removal of UN peacekeepers. The impact has been devastating. Half a million people were displaced by violence in Darfur in 2014 and 36,000 more have already been displaced in 2015 — an average of over 1,000 per day.