Thursday, June 23, 2011

"Amidst ‘Dire’ Humanitarian Crisis, U.S. Urges Ceasefire in South Kordofan"

I'm quoted twice in Pam Johnson's IPS article on Sudan. Here's the first:
Some experts in Washington believe that the U.S. has little influence on al-Bashir, who has long relied on the support of oil-purchasing Gulf and Asian powers to back his army’s military excesses.

"I’m not sure the administration has a muscle to flex anymore," David Shinn, former U.S. ambassador to Ethiopia, told IPS. "The only thing it can do other than pontificate more vociferously than it has in the past is to threaten to slow down any aspects of the normalisation of relations."

"However, given that the overriding issues are moving forward with implementation of the CPA and [securing] Southern Sudan on Jul. 9, there will likely be a reluctance in Washington to do or say anything that threatens those processes," he added.
And here's the second:
"China-U.S. relations are also worth considering in this matter," Shinn told IPS. "I wouldn’t be surprised if there haven’t already been discussions with China in an effort to lean a little heavier on Khartoum."

"Given that China has more economic leverage than the U.S., they might well be willing to speak frankly with the government in Khartoum to ensure that the situation in Southern Kordofan doesn’t totally destroy the possibility of a peaceful transition on Jul. 9," he added.

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