Congressman Donald M. Payne
We are here today because there is a serious crisis going on in Darfur Sudan. The House has already recognized this by passing H CON RES 403 which condemns the Government of Sudan for the atrocities it is committing and is supporting through the Janjaweed militias.
Government troops and their allied militia raped, tortured, maimed, and burned entire villages in a deliberate and systematic manner to cleanse the area of African Muslims.
Now, there is a severe humanitarian catastrophe on our hands as the rainy season is approaching and thousands of people will be exposed to famine and disease. It is time that the Government of the United States, the United Nations, and the international community call the atrocities in Darfur by their rightful name and today we call for the following:
One , we call on our government to declare that genocide was and is still being committed against the Massalit, Zagawa, and the Fur people in Darfur on the basis that the atrocities in Darfur meet the requirements of the 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and the Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and that, therefore we have a LEGAL OBLIGATION under international law to ACT.
Article 2 of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide declares that "in the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethical, racial or religious group, as such : (a) killing members of the group; (b) causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; (d) imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; and (e) forcibly transferring children of the group to another group."
Two, we call on the UN Security Council to introduce a resolution authorizing intervention into Darfur.
Three, we call on this Administration to use our intelligence assets to expose those responsible for the genocide.
I am introducing legislation which sets out these points and I urge all colleagues on both sides of the house and both sides of the aisle to support this legislation.
And I also will be introducing legislation establishing a DARFUR RESETTLEMENT, RECONSTRUCTION, and REHABLITATION FUND so the people can return to actual homes and villages not burned out remnants of what used to be.
What is going on in Sudan is the modern day Holocaust. This is the first test of the 21 century to see if the international community is going to sit back and allow another Holocaust, another Rwanda, and another Armenia. WE HAVE TO TAKE ACTION and hold the Sudanese government accountable for its participation and support of mass murder, rape and torture. These innocent children, women, and men need our assistance, and we must help them. Again, we not only have a LEGAL OBLIGATION as a party to the 1948 Convention, to prevent genocide in Darfur, we also have a moral obligation.
Lastly I commend the Committee on Appropriations for approving $95 million funds for Darfur.