Published on
by
The Independent/UK

Darfur: A Letter From Europe's Leading Writers

On The Fiftieth Anniversary of the EU, A Call To Action

by
Günter Grass, Harold Pinter, et al.

How dare we Europeans celebrate this weekend while on a continent some few miles south of us the most defenceless, dispossessed and weak are murdered in Sudan?

Has the European Union - born of atrocity to unite against further atrocity - no word to utter, no principle to act on, no action to take, in order to prevent these massacres in Darfur? Is the cowardliness over Srebrenica to be repeated? If so, what do we celebrate?

The thin skin of our political join?

The futile posturings of our political class?

The impotent nullities of our bureaucracies?

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The Europe which allowed Auschwitz and failed in Bosnia must not tolerate the murder in Darfur. Europe is more than a network of the political classes, more than a first world economic club and a bureaucratic excrescence. It is an inherited culture which sustains our shared belief in the value and dignity of the human being. In the name of that common culture and those shared values, we call upon the 27 leaders to impose immediately the most stringent sanctions upon the leaders of the Sudanese regime.

Forbid them our shores, our health service and our luxury goods. Freeze their assets in our banks and move immediately to involve other concerned countries.

We must not once again betray our European civilization by watching and waiting while another civilization in Africa is destroyed.

Let this action be our gift to ourselves and our proof of ourselves. And when it is done, then let us celebrate together with pride.

Umberto Eco Dario Fo Günter Grass Jürgen Habermas Václav Havel Seamus Heaney Bernard Henri-Levy Harold Pinter Franca Rame Tom Stoppard

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