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Statement on the Situation in Darfur

Statement on the Situation in Darfur


Ambassador John R. Bolton, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations
Remarks to the Security Council
New York City
August 28, 2006

USUN PRESS RELEASE #213


Mr. President,

I would like to thank you for holding this meeting and the Secretariat for their thorough briefing on the tragic situation unfolding in Darfur. If I may be frank, though, the briefing underscored and reinforced what everyone in this room already knows: every day that we delay in deploying a UN peacekeeping operation means more innocent civilians are slaughtered; it means more innocent women and children are raped; it means more people will question the ability of the Security Council to take meaningful and decisive action.

The United States calls upon the Security Council to immediately adopt a resolution authoring the United Nations to assume responsibility for peacekeeping in Darfur. We also call on all interested parties to intercede with the Government of National Unity (GNU) to fulfill its responsibility to ensure the protection of its citizens and accept a UN force in Darfur.

The people of Darfur cannot afford delay. The UN with its expertise can strengthen the peacekeeping force on the ground immediately and save the lives of innocent civilians. Only a large, mobile, fast-reacting and robust UN force, with African forces forming its core, can legitimately and credibly protect civilians, ensure humanitarian access, and fully implement the Darfur Peace Agreement.

The United States calls on the government of Sudan to accept unconditionally a UN peacekeeping operation in Darfur, and to extend their full cooperation to such a force. However, until such consent is given the Security Council must continue to uphold its responsibility and adopt a resolution authorizing this mission.

Mr. President, the time for talk is over. It is time for action. It is time for this Council to uphold its responsibility and pass a resolution immediately authorizing the deployment of UN forces. Every day that we delay adds to the tragic loss of life and suffering of the people of the Sudan. And every day that we delay emboldens those who wish to the undermine the fragile peace we have worked so hard to achieve. The deployment of UN forces to Darfur offers the best hope we have to bolster the Darfur Peace Agreement. But one thing is clear -- failure of this Council to act will most certainly doom it to failure.

Released on August 28, 2006

ENDS


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