New York, NY- With the U.S. set to take over the presidency of the United Nations Security Council this June, the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) and Africa Action have teamed up Africa Services Committee, American Jewish World Service, the Damanga Coalition for Freedom and Democracy, Genocide Intervention Network, NY City Coalition for Darfur, New York Vigilers, STAND, Rock for Darfur, Darfur Metro, Darfur Rehabilitation Project, and other human rights organizations in calling for the deployment of well-equipped peacekeepers in Darfur. The groups will hold a rally on May 22, 2008 from 12-2pm at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, located at 140 East 45th St. between 3rd and Lexington Avenues.
“The recent rebel attacks on Khartoum by Darfuri rebel group the Justice and Equality Movement and subsequent government reprisals against civilians may worsen the humanitarian situation in Sudan that has already grown more dire over the course of 2008,” said Gerald LeMelle, Executive Director of Africa Action, who has taken the lead in organizing the rally. “The U.S. presidency of the UN Security Council in June offers an opportunity for the Bush administration to deliver bold diplomatic action, not mere rhetoric, to address this crisis. U.S. leadership at this critical moment is vital to upholding the international community’s responsibility to protect the people of Darfur and promote peace for Sudan.”
The U.N Security Council has primary responsibility to maintain international peace and security. The Presidency of the Council rotates monthly, according to the English alphabetical listing of its member States, and on June 1, 2008, the United States will take over the presidency. Over 450,000 people have lost their lives and millions have been displaced in the ongoing genocide in Darfur. Although the U.S. government has acknowledged this genocide, it has failed to take the necessary action to protect the people of Darfur. Africa Action, the ANCA and rally supporters are calling on President Bush to assert U.S. leadership in support of a multinational intervention to stop the ongoing genocide in Darfur.
“The Armenian American community knows all too well the repercussions of inaction in the face of genocide,” noted ANCA Eastern Region Executive Director Karine Birazian. “We commend Africa Action in taking the lead on this initiative and look forward to working with all rally organizers to once and for all put an end to the cycle of genocide.”
Armenian Americans and concerned human rights activists are encouraged to attend the rally in large numbers and raise their voices in support of decisive U.S. action to end the genocide in Darfur. For more information, please contact Briggs Bomba at Africa Action at 202-546-7961 or email at Briggs@africaaction.org. Please click here to RSVP online.