Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Support Nonviolent Peaceforce's Sudan Referendum Petition

Nonviolent Peaceforce is an organization of volunteers that do "accompaniment" work. They physically accompany "human rights defenders" such as community organizers and lawyers, whose work puts them in danger. NVP works in countries where their international presence and witness helps provide a level of security for the human rights defenders.

I electronically signed NVP's petition to provide security during and after the January 2011 referendum process.
Five years ago, your guarantee of Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement brought hope to millions.

In only a few weeks, South Sudan will hold a vote on whether or not to become an independent country. The Comprehensive Peace Agreement promised this vote would take place. And that promise includes a referendum in which no person risks physical violence or threats to participate.

Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP) is a non-partisan, neutral organization with a committed base of support in the United States. NP has deployed international civilian peacekeepers to South Sudan in an effort to ensure that civilians are protected and violence prevented during the referendum period.

But the international community, including all guarantors of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, must also help the Sudanese parties to ensure that a minimum level of security is maintained during the referendum process.

I call upon you to urge the Government of Sudan and the Government of South Sudan to do just that, in the strongest possible terms. Please keep your promise.

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