To the Daily:

In recent years, the genocide in Darfur, Sudan has received decreased media attention — but that doesn’t mean that things have gotten better for the people of Sudan. Millions remain displaced, living in dangerous camps in Sudan or neighboring Chad, and fighting still continues between government-backed forces and Darfurian rebel groups. Recently, the Justice and Equality Movement signed a cease-fire agreement with the government of Sudan. But we’ve seen this before. The fate of this year’s cease-fire is up in the air. Other rebel groups continue to fight in the region.

Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir is running for re-election this April, even though the International Criminal Court has indicted him for charges of genocide. His case has been stalled in the court for quite some time, even though proof of a government-orchestrated genocide in Darfur pervades the country. The upcoming election may allow for Sudan to rebuild itself around ideas of peace and equality, but international oversight is extremely important in making sure the democratic process is taking place. As of now, there is no oversight and the government has already created barriers to democracy.

With all of these problems it may seem like University students can’t do anything to help, but this is simply not true. This week, students from STAND: A Student Anti-Genocide Coalition will be at the posting wall in Mason Hall handing out information and providing postcards for students to sign urging international action in the upcoming election. We will culminate with a benefit concert on March 20 in Angell Hall Auditorium B to raise money for Women for Women — an organization that aids female war refugees. Various performance groups on campus will perform. Tickets are $3 in advance (standexec09@umich.edu) or $5 at the door.

Danielle Young
This letter was written on behalf of STAND: A Student Anti-Genocide Coalition

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