2 February 2012

Sudan: U.S Congressman Wolf Urges Obama On Sudan


The following is a letter written by U.S. Congressman Frank Wolf to President Barack Obama regarding the ongoing situation in Sudan and the issue surrounding Bart Fischer, who was granted a license by the Treasury Department to legally represent Khartoum in Washington, DC.

Dear Mr. President:

My office recently received video footage filmed by Ryan Boyette, a young American who has been living and working in Sudan and South Sudan.

Specifically, in the words of New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof in an October 22, 2011 piece (enclosed), Ryan has been bearing, "witness to atrocities in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan, secretly staying behind when other foreigners were evacuated."

Ryan e-mailed my office and shared video (http://wolf.house.gov/sudan) of a 35-year old Sudanese woman named Halima Kega from the Nuba Mountains who has been living in Yida Refugee camp in South Sudan. I commend the video to your attention. She makes an impassioned plea on behalf of her family, who were forced to flee the violence being perpetrated against them by the Sudanese government-the very same government that the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) thought was deserving of legal representation in Washington.

Halima speaks of the bombing of civilian populations. She wonders at what the Nuban women, children, widows, orphans and elderly have done to deserve this horrific treatment. She speaks of fleeing her home and the hunger that she and her family have experienced. She calls for accountability for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

Meanwhile your administration deemed it appropriate to grant Bashir, an internationally indicted war criminal, and his government, the privilege of representation in Washington. Not only are we failing to hold him accountable, but this administration is actually enabling him.

I once again urge you to immediately revoke Mr. Bart Fisher's license to represent the Government of Sudan.

I continue to believe that he engaged in lobbying activity in his correspondence with my office-in violation of the parameters Treasury set forth. But just as significantly, he should never have been awarded the necessary license to represent the genocidal government of Sudan at all.

The Treasury Department's decision to permit this to happen is shameful and a blot on the record of your administration.

Frank R. Wolf

Member of Congress

P.S. Please let me know your thoughts after watching the video.

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