(House of Representatives - September 28, 2010)

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[Pages H7052-H7055]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  Mr. TANNER. Madam Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and agree to 
the resolution (H. Res. 1588) expressing the sense of the House of 
Representatives on the importance of the full implementation of the 
Comprehensive Peace Agreement to help ensure peace and stability in 
Sudan during and after mandated referenda, as amended.
  The Clerk read the title of the resolution.
  The text of the resolution is as follows:

                              H. Res. 1588

       Whereas Sudan stands at a crossroads, in the final phase of 
     what could be a historic transition from civil war to peace, 
     and Sudan's full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace 
     Agreement (CPA) in this next

[[Page H7053]]

     year will determine the future of this centrally important 
     country in Africa and the stability of the region;
       Whereas January 2010 marked the fifth anniversary of the 
     signing of the CPA which ended more than 20 years of civil 
     war between northern and southern Sudan, fueled by northern 
     persecution of populations in the south, that resulted in the 
     deaths of more than 2,000,000 people and the displacement of 
     over 4,000,000 people in southern Sudan;
       Whereas the CPA committed the northern-dominated National 
     Congress Party (NCP) and the southern-dominated Sudan 
     People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), to assume joint 
     governing responsibility during a six-year Interim Period 
     ending in July 2011;
       Whereas Sudan's April 2010 elections did not meet 
     international standards due to widespread and continuing 
     violations of political rights, irregularities in voter 
     registration, significant logistical and procedural 
     shortcomings, intimidation and violence in some localities, 
     and the continuing conflict in Darfur which prevented full 
     campaigning and voter participation;
       Whereas the conflict in Darfur remains unresolved, with 
     over 300,000 people killed and over 2,000,000 people still 
     displaced in a highly unstable security situation perpetrated 
     largely by the government in Khartoum;
       Whereas since 1999, the United States Department of State 
     has designated Sudan as a ``country of particular concern'' 
     for its systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of 
     religious freedom or belief and related human rights, as 
     recommended by the United States Commission on International 
     Religious Freedom, and despite progress made via the CPA on 
     religious freedom issues, there are still reports of abuses;
       Whereas at the end of the CPA in January 2011, the 
     agreement requires referenda on self-determination for 
     southern Sudan and on whether Abyei will remain in the north 
     or join the south;
       Whereas following the Interim Period, popular consultations 
     in Southern Kordofan State and Blue Nile State are to be held 
     to determine the governance arrangements in those two states;
       Whereas it is essential that the referenda and accompanying 
     popular consultations are held on time, that they are free, 
     fair, and credible, and that if the outcome of the southern 
     Sudan referendum is independence, two stable and viable 
     democratic states result;
       Whereas the Government of Southern Sudan faces post-
     conflict reconstruction challenges including establishing 
     democratic, responsive, and transparent governance, 
     addressing human resources and capacity-building needs, 
     strengthening and reforming the judiciary and security forces 
     to address communal and inter-ethnic violence, 
     professionalizing the police and security forces, developing 
     basic infrastructure, natural resources and the economy; 
     providing basic services including water, education, health 
     care and social services, and establishing cooperative and 
     transparent wealth-sharing mechanisms;
       Whereas in August 2009, the NCP and SPLM signed a bilateral 
     agreement to address and implement many of the CPA's 
     outstanding provisions, but since that time the NCP has 
     consistently delayed and reneged on its CPA commitments, 
     thereby increasing tension and distrust between northern and 
     southern Sudan and endangering the CPA by infringing on the 
     freedom of speech, assembly, and association of candidates, 
     political party activists, and journalists during and after 
     the election process, including censoring the media and 
     arresting political party leaders;
       Whereas the NCP continues to restrict and disrupt United 
     Nations peacekeeping, humanitarian operations, and human 
     rights organizations in Darfur;
       Whereas the United States played a central role in 
     negotiations that led to the CPA, is a guarantor of that 
     peace agreement, and continues to play a leading role 
     bilaterally and multilaterally to bring about a just and 
     lasting peace in Sudan;
       Whereas Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton stated in 
     October 2009 that ``the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between 
     the North and South will be a flashpoint for renewed conflict 
     if not fully implemented through viable national elections, a 
     referendum on self-determination for the South, resolution of 
     the border disputes, and the willingness of the respective 
     parties to live up to their agreements''; and
       Whereas sustained pressure and engagement from the 
     international community in support of the CPA, including the 
     upcoming referenda, is essential to bring about sustainable 
     peace in Sudan: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of 
     Representatives that the United States Government should--
       (1) work with appropriate Sudanese parties and responsible 
     regional and international partners to--
       (A) build consensus on the steps needed to implement the 
     Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), including the upcoming 
     referenda, and promote stability throughout Sudan;
       (B) correct serious and systemic problems in the election 
     process to ensure that they do not reoccur during the 
     referenda campaign and voting processes, including 
     irregularities in voter registration, logistical and 
     procedural challenges, poor voter education, human rights 
     infringements, intimidation, and violence; and
       (C) ensure that the National Congress Party (NCP) and the 
     Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) implement 
     procedures whereby the referenda occur as scheduled, 
     including appointing competent and credible members to all 
     referenda commissions and providing technical assistance to 
     and funding for the commissions;
       (2) work with the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) 
     to ensure security during and after the referenda campaign 
     and voting processes, which will require a robust monitoring 
     and protection presence in areas prone to conflict;
       (3) take concrete steps through the contribution of 
     targeted resources and technical expertise to--
       (A) ensure international monitoring and observation of 
     registration and polling to guarantee a secure environment 
     for individual registration and voting, and to prevent voter 
     intimidation or fraud occurring during these critical phases 
     of the referenda;
       (B) ensure that the Government of National Unity (GNU), as 
     required by the CPA, provides adequate funding at 
     predetermined levels and timelines for the registration and 
     polling periods, given the need to ensure that those who 
     register are able to access polling stations on voting day;
       (C) ensure that responsible nations commit adequate 
     resources and technical expertise to support the referenda 
     and voter education programs in southern Sudan, Abyei, and 
     other areas where people will vote in the referenda to 
     promote understanding of the nature, importance of 
     participation, consequences of the referenda process; and
       (D) support the popular consultation processes in Southern 
     Kordofan State and Blue Nile State, including through 
     provision of technical assistance and support for public 
       (4) work with appropriate Sudanese parties and responsible 
     regional and international partners to ensure--
       (A) the right of return of Sudanese refugees and displaced 
     persons, including Darfuris and southerners, by providing 
     assistance and safe passage to all such persons; and
       (B) that the citizenship rights of southerners in the north 
     and northerners in the south are respected in accordance with 
     international standards should the south vote for 
       (5) work with responsible regional and international 
     partners to ensure a stable north-south border and a 
     permanent peace in Sudan, utilizing policy options if parties 
     fail to honor the CPA, especially as it relates to border 
     demarcation pre-referenda;
       (6) continue to utilize diplomats and experts and sustain 
     engagement to support the African Union and United Nations-
     led negotiations over the post-referendum issues, including 
     working with responsible regional and international partners 
     to assist in making necessary arrangements for a post-2011 
     peaceful transition, with specific focus on oil and revenue 
     sharing, citizenship, return of refugees and displaced 
     persons, security arrangements along the border, and 
     protection of the rights of minorities, particularly the 
     religious and ethnic minorities historically marginalized;
       (7) utilize diplomats and experts to revitalize the Darfur 
     Peace Process and press the NCP, northern political parties, 
     armed groups, and civil society representatives to address 
     human rights abuses (including gender-based violence) and the 
     ongoing atrocities and displacement in Darfur;
       (8) undertake renewed efforts to define and implement the 
     Administration's stated Sudan policy of October 2009, 
     including by publicly articulating the benchmarks and related 
     incentives and pressures used by the Administration to gauge 
     progress or backsliding on key provisions of the CPA, 
     including the holding of a free and fair referendum in 
     southern Sudan;
       (9) hold the NCP accountable for its actions given the 
     NCP's human rights violations and efforts to impede CPA 
     implementation since the announcement of the United States 
     Sudan policy, and the need for the United States to both 
     balance incentives with pressures, by--
       (A) identifying NCP government agencies and officials 
     responsible for particularly severe human rights and 
     religious freedom violations as required under section 
     402b(2) of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 
     (IRFA), and prohibit those individuals identified under 
     section 402b(2) of IRFA from entry into the United States;
       (B) encouraging multilateral asset freezes on NCP 
     government agencies and travel bans on officials responsible 
     for particularly severe human rights and religious freedom 
       (C) continuing to encourage greater multilateral 
     enforcement of the arms embargo set out in the 2004 United 
     Nations Security Council Resolution 1556 and strengthened in 
     the 2005 United Nations Security Council Resolution 1591;
       (D) continuing to encourage multilateral support for 
     efforts to hold accountable Omar al-Bashir and other Sudanese 
     officials accused of genocide, war crimes, or crimes against 
     humanity, recognizing that justice is essential for there to 
     be lasting peace; and
       (E) vigorously advocating on behalf of any credible 
     humanitarian organizations that come under pressure from 
     Khartoum or are at any point expelled from the country, 
     thereby compromising their ability to provide vital services;

[[Page H7054]]

       (10) support the Government of Southern Sudan, including 
     through the provision of technical assistance and expertise, 
     in developing its economy, rule of law, and social service 
     and educational infrastructures, improving democratic 
     accountability and human rights, and strengthening 
     reconciliation efforts; and
       (11) unequivocally stand, during this period of preparation 
     and possible transition, with those people of Sudan who share 
     aspirations for a peaceful, prosperous and democratic future.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from 
Tennessee (Mr. Tanner) and the gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Smith) 
each will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Tennessee.

                             General Leave

  Mr. TANNER. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members 
may have 5 legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and 
include extraneous material on the resolution.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Tennessee?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. TANNER. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I want to thank Mr. Capuano and Members of the House Sudan Caucus for 
introducing this resolution to remind us of the important work that 
needs to be done to implement the final stages of the Comprehensive 
Peace Agreement between the National Congress Party and the Southern 
Sudanese Liberation Movement in Sudan.
  The CPA requires referenda in January 2011 to determine whether South 
Sudan will become an independent country and whether Abyei (AH-BEE-AY) 
region will be a part of the North or South.
  The Obama Administration has worked tirelessly to help the Sudanese 
people prepare for the referenda and the hard policy choices that must 
come after.
  This resolution puts the Congress on record encouraging the President 
to continue a robust engagement in the CPA process and make sure the 
National Congress Party and the Sudanese Peoples' Liberation Movement 
fulfill the obligations of the agreement.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. SMITH of New Jersey. Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise in 
support of H. Res. 1588, of which I am the original cosponsor.
  Madam Speaker, we are all too familiar with the famous quote by the 
American philosopher George Santayana, who said, ``Those who cannot 
remember the past are condemned to repeat it.'' The truth of this 
saying is tragically realized in the case of war and genocide.
  General Romeo Dallaire, the commander of the former United Nations 
mission in Rwanda, tried unsuccessfully in 1994 to warn the United 
Nations that huge massacres were imminent in that country. Even he 
miscalculated the magnitude of the threat. Within a few months, Rwanda 
was engulfed in genocide, leading to the deaths of nearly 800,000 
  Larry Eagleburger, a former ambassador to Yugoslavia who served as 
Deputy Secretary of State and then Secretary of State, never suspected 
that the hostilities in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina would 
escalate to the slaughter of more than 8,000 people that took place in 
Srebrenica in 1995.
  Sadly, we have too many indications about what could happen if the 
two referenda scheduled to take place in Sudan in January do not take 
place fairly and peacefully. The 20-year war between the north and the 
south of Sudan that ended in 1995 took the lives of over 2 million 
people and displaced a further 4 million.

                              {time}  1610

  Peace in Darfur is inextricably linked to peace throughout the rest 
of Sudan. And the genocide there in 2003 unleashed the slaughter of 
over 300,000 women, men, and children. Almost 3 million have been 
displaced and are still consigned to the misery of camps for internally 
displaced persons.
  Like many of my colleagues, I have visited Sudan. I have been to 
Mukjar and Kalma camp, and I have actually had a face-to-face meeting 
with General Bashir, the dictator in Khartoum, pushing for peace, 
pushing for an end to this slaughter. Unfortunately, he was obsessed 
only with trying to convince me that the sanctions against his 
government needed to be lifted. The fact that the sanctions were based 
on the senseless killing and displacement sponsored by his government 
was dismissed by him as of no consequence.
  This signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the 
Government of Sudan and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement in 2005 
marked a potential turning point for the Sudanese people. It calls for 
elections leading to a referendum in January of 2011 to determine 
whether the south will remain united to the north or secede as an 
independent state. The region of Abyei is also to hold a referendum to 
determine whether it will remain in the north or possibly secede with 
the south should the south choose that course. Specific conditions were 
to be met in anticipation of these major events, to ensure that they 
would be conducted credibly and peacefully.
  Madam Speaker, these interim 5 years have yielded signs of hope that 
the country could settle into a stable, lasting peace. The United 
States has devoted substantial resources, nearly $9 billion in 
humanitarian, development, and peacekeeping assistance since 1994 to 
support the CPA's implementation. But numerous incidents have also 
exposed the extreme lack of trustworthiness of the Khartoum government 
and the urgent need for the government of southern Sudan to increase 
its capacity and accountability.
  The Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health, on which I serve as 
ranking member, and the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission have held 
several hearings over the last 14 months. The testimony we have heard 
at those hearings sounded a major alarm about the ominous storm clouds 
gathering over Sudan. In fact, the issues raised at the two hearings in 
July of 2009 and the proposed solutions to those issues were so 
compelling that I and several other Members forwarded the expert 
testimony to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Scott Gration, our 
Special Envoy, asking them to take this incredibly compelling 
information into account as the administration engaged in peace efforts 
in Sudan.
  Unfortunately, the administration took little or know account of that 
advice. Furthermore, it seemed to ignore its own strategy that was 
publicized in October of last year. Key members of the National 
Security Council deputies committee, which was supposed to meet 
quarterly, met only once in January with no noticeable outcome. The 
administration claimed it was taking the advice of numerous experts to 
establish specific benchmarks to be met by the respective parties 
according to a set time frame. The achievement of those benchmarks, 
created to ensure the timely implementation of the CPA, would be tied 
to incentives and disincentives to motivate their achievement. There is 
no evidence that these benchmarks were ever created, much less enforced 
with discernible consequences.
  Madam Speaker, the President and the State Department have taken some 
action during the past few weeks, apparently recognizing that the time 
remaining until the North-South referendum is extremely short. One most 
hope that the adage ``better late than never'' will apply in this case. 
The challenges to be addressed in the next few weeks, particularly the 
demarcation of the North-South border and the post-referendum agreement 
on wealth sharing and citizenship can be met if the United States plays 
a leadership role in gathering the influence and cooperation of the 
African Union and other international players. Herculean measures must 
also be undertaken to ensure that the January 9 referendum is conducted 
in a manner that ensures the credibility of the outcome as well as the 
peaceful acceptance of that outcome by the parties.
  With H. Res. 1588, I join my colleagues in pressing upon the 
administration the urgent need to assist the Sudanese people in their 
long-sought-after quest for peace. The effort will be great, but the 
price of another even more catastrophic war would be even greater. No 
one, particularly the Sudanese people, can afford to pay that price.
  Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. TANNER. Madam Speaker, I am pleased to yield 3 minutes to the 
gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. Capuano).
  Mr. CAPUANO. Madam Speaker, I am here to support this resolution.

[[Page H7055]]

Very clearly, this resolution is simply intended to encourage the 
Government of the United States and other governments around world to 
continue pressing to make sure that the resolution that is on the 
ballot January 9 of next year for the people of south Sudan to decide 
for themselves whether they want to make their own country or be part 
of the Government of Sudan. That is all we want. It is an agreement 
that was made in 2005 by warring parties.
  I want to be clear. Before I got elected to Congress 12 years ago, I 
might have known where Sudan was, not sure. I would not have known 
where Darfur was. I would not have known that there was a problem in 
south Sudan. This is not a problem that I have been studying for a 
while. It is a problem that started to come to my attention after 9/11 
when I realized, like many Americans, you trace back who is this bin 
Laden guy, where is he from. He spent years in Sudan training, 
recruiting, preparing for attacks like 9/11. That was just the 
beginning of it.
  South Sudan decided that it wanted some freedom. They had a 
revolution of their own. Hundreds of thousands of people were killed. 
Millions were displaced. That same government in Khartoum also, soon 
thereafter, started a genocide on their own people in Darfur.
  All we are asking, in a very difficult situation, with multi-facets 
that are beyond comprehension, to simply have the United States 
Government continue what they are doing. The President of the United 
States went to New York City last week to meet on Sudan at the U.N. The 
United States has a Special Envoy there. We are paying special 
  And by the way, it is not just because I have a bleeding heart for 
people who have been massacred. It is not just that people should have 
their own right of self-determination. It is also because this 
particular country, this particular section of the country is in a 
critically important region in Africa.
  I think most everybody in this country have now heard of the Pilots 
of Somalia. That is right next door. Eritrea, right next door, 
Ethiopia, right next door. All around them is instability, danger and 
potential violence that could draw in the entire region. That is what 
this peace agreement is all about. That is why I am here, for January 9 
of next year, to encourage the world to pay attention to this for their 
own sake, if not for the sake of the people in Sudan and south Sudan.
  Mr. PAYNE. Madam Speaker, I rise today in support of Res. 1588, which 
calls attention to the upcoming referenda in Sudan and the need to 
ensure full implementation of that country's Comprehensive Peace 
Agreement, CPA. I want to commend my fellow co-chairs of the Sudan 
Caucus, Mr. Capuano, Mr. Wolf, and Mr. McCaul, for their bipartisan 
leadership on this issue. Mr. Capuano, our Republican co-chairs, and I 
have worked hard to bring this resolution to the floor because time is 
short. I support this resolution and say we must sound the alarm for 
what is going on in Sudan. The people of Sudan deserve our support for 
timely, free and fair referenda on the independence of Southern Sudan 
and Abyei. The National Congress Party, headed by President Omar el 
Bashir, must not be allowed to derail the referenda.
  The referenda are part of the peace dividend promised to the people 
of South Sudan and Abyei following the 21-year war civil war between 
North and South Sudan. During the war, which claimed the lives of 2 
million Southerners and displaced 4 million, the Bashir regime used 
aerial bombings against innocent, defenseless children, women, men, 
elderly, and disabled. Indeed, the war nearly destroyed an entire 
region--South Sudan, but it could not destroy the spirit of its people.
  On January 9, 2005 members of the U.S. Government, including myself, 
witnessed the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, CPA, which 
ended the war and outlined the path to secure lasting peace in Sudan. 
The signing of the agreement launched a 6-year Interim Period during 
which Khartoum would have the opportunity to show the people of the 
South that it was capable of change. At the end of the 6 year period--
on January 9, 2011--the CPA promised an opportunity for the people of 
the South to determine whether the regime in Khartoum had changed 
enough that they want to remain a part of Sudan or whether they want to 
secede. The people in the marginal area of Abyei--the region that holds 
in its soil Sudan's oil wealth--would decide if they would retain their 
special administrative status in the North or to become part of the 
  Today, with less than four months until the referenda, Sudan is 
dismally behind on implementing the CPA. Bashir's regime has refused to 
cooperate on key measures that must be put in place. Khartoum has 
repeatedly played games, stalled, held up, and obstructed so many 
critical steps in the fulfillment of the CPA that as of today, it is 
unclear whether the referenda in January can actually be held freely 
and fairly. Sudan also faces a number of challenges as it struggles to 
emerge as a democracy from decades of civil war. The conflict and 
violence in Darfur still rage even as the international community hopes 
for peace.
  Indeed, Sudan could erupt into conflict once again if the referenda 
are not held freely and fairly. We support House Resolution 1588 to 
call on the Administration and the international community to fully 
employ all of our diplomatic tools, as well as significant 
international technical assistance, to ensure that the referenda are 
timely, free, peaceful, and fair to the people of Sudan. The 
consequences of failed referenda are too great.
  The United States has served as a guarantor of the CPA, helping to 
negotiate the agreement and facilitate its implementation by both 
signatories--the National Congress Party, NCP, and Sudan People's 
Liberation Movement/Army, SPLM/A. We have invested considerable time 
and resources in helping the people of Sudan, and we must ensure that 
this level of commitment is maintained through this critical time and 
beyond. Now is the time to refocus attention on Sudan.
  H. Res. 1588 sends a clear message to Khartoum that a dismissal of 
the CPA will not be tolerated. I urge my colleagues to vote in favor of 
this bipartisan resolution.
  Mr. SMITH of New Jersey. Madam Speaker, I have no further requests 
for time, and I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TANNER. Madam Speaker, I have no further requests for time, and I 
yield back the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion offered by the 
gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. Tanner) that the House suspend the rules 
and agree to the resolution, H. Res. 1588, as amended.
  The question was taken; and (two-thirds being in the affirmative) the 
rules were suspended and the resolution, as amended, was agreed to.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.