November 11, 2009 Leave a comment
Yesterday, Special Envoy to Sudan, Scott Gration and National Security Council Director, Samantha Power sat down with Jerry Fowler of the Save Darfur Coalition and Layla Amjadi of STAND. They discussed a wide range of topics regarding the recently released policy by the Obama Administration.
Gration: We don’t have yet all the monitoring mechanisms that we need. When the NGOs were expelled, we lost some very valuable NGOs that we have not gotten back in yet… And the fact is that while we’ve been able to compensate for food and water and healthcare and sanitation, some of the protection NGOs have not been able to get back in…
For us to objectively verify, we’re going to have to have different types of NGOs on the ground and more of those NGOs on the ground. And we’re going to have UNAMID with more freedom of movement and the ability to monitor better what’s happening on the ground, so that we can take action. And those are the things we’re working on right now.
Other highlights that stuck out at me in this illuminating conference include:
- Samantha Power mentioned that everytime President Obama has sat down with Chinese President, Hu Jintao, “this issue has been discussed”.
- And Scott Gration mentioned that “a major impediment to [Darfuri] people returning home is the ‘pschological stuff’.”
I’m glad senior officials in the Administration recognize the deep impact of such trauma and how that affects peacemaking.