The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Michael Stulman (202) 546-7961

Africa Action Honors Rwandan Genocide with Increased Public Mobilization to Stop the Genocide in Darfur

Hundreds to Attend Special Events as the Demand to Stop the Genocide Swells


This month Africa Action honors the 15th anniversary of the Rwandan
genocide by hosting several special events designed to mobilize public
pressure and strengthen collective efforts to demand peace and justice
in Darfur and all of Sudan. The events are a part of Africa Action's
intensified campaign, JUST L.E.A.D. (LEARN. EDUCATE. ACT. DAILY).

Just as the world witnessed more than 800,000 people die in Rwanda 15
years ago, the genocide of the 21st century takes place in Darfur,
Sudan. Gerald LeMelle, Executive Director of Africa Action said today, "In
100 days a chronology of events transpired in Rwanda that resulted in
nearly one million people being slaughtered. Today President Obama and
the U.S. Congress must now fulfill their promise to act expediently
with "unstinting resolve" to end genocide in Darfur. President Obama
must ensure that U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan, Scott Gration, has a
full team of dedicated junior and senior staff. Gration must have
access to unconstrained, constant communication and dialogue with
President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton."

Africa Action calls on U.S. to lead bilateral and U.S.-led multilateral
diplomatic pressure that will ensure the Comprehensive Peace Agreement
(CPA) implementation. The U.S. must pursue an all-Sudan strategy where
both Darfur and the CPA are top priorities. Furthermore, full
deployment of UN peacekeepers on the ground is vital in ensuring
civilian protection and long-lasting peace. The U.S. should continue to
engage with the "Friends of UNAMID" working group to match
troop-contributing countries (TCCs) with appropriate training and
logistical support from donors.

Michael Stulman, Associate Director for Policy and Communications at Africa Action said today, "We
have outlined the necessary steps to stop the genocide in Darfur for
six years. President Obama must adopt these recommendations to bring
about peace in the region so that the atrocities that took place in
Rwanda are no longer recurring in Sudan."

To raise awareness and mobilize public pressure on the U.S. to exert
leadership, Africa Action will be hosting several events this month.

In Washington, D.C. the Children of Darfur exhibit
is being hosted at the Martin Luther King Library all month. Children
are the youngest survivors of the genocide in Darfur, and their
drawings depict the atrocities they endure. Dr. Jerry Ehrlich, a
volunteer for Doctors Without Borders in 2004, was working at a medical
center for internally displaced persons in Darfur, Sudan. He collected
drawings from children while he was working in one of the camps. Africa
Action has converted these drawings into an exhibit to help remind
people of the on-going genocide in Darfur.

"I wanted to document the plight of the people through the eyes of
children. I brought with me 25 boxes of crayons and about 400 pieces of
drawing paper. They were given out to children between the ages of 8
and 12. I asked them to draw about their lives in Darfur and return 7-8
drawings for me to take home as a remembrance...As you view the drawings
their message is obvious. They depict the atrocities these children
have gone through and still unfortunately live with,"
said Dr. Jerry Ehrlich. For more information on the exhibit, visit

In New York, Africa Action's Briggs Bomba will emcee a special benefit concert in New York: Rock to Save Darfur.
The April 14th event featuring hip-hop artist Immortal Technique and DJ
Static intends to raise funds and awareness for Africa Action and other
groups working for peace and human security in Darfur and throughout
Sudan. Visit our website, for ticket information.

Also in Washington, DC, Africa Action will host Chiwoniso Maraire, an
accomplished singer, songwriter and human rights' activist. With
Maraire will be Comrade Fatso, one of Zimbabwe's most popular and
controversial poets. Together they will present a concert performance
April 18th. Details will be announced on our website shortly.

For more information on all upcoming events and the latest talking points on the genocide in Darfur, please visit

Africa Action is a national organization that works for political, economic and social justice in Africa. Through the provision of accessible information and analysis combined with the mobilization of public pressure we work to change the policies and policy-making processes of U.S. and multinational institutions toward Africa. The work of Africa Action is grounded in the history and purpose of its predecessor organizations, the American Committee on Africa (ACOA), The Africa Fund, and the Africa Policy Information Center (APIC), which have fought for freedom and justice in Africa since 1953. Continuing this tradition, Africa Action seeks to re-shape U.S. policy toward African countries.