CRS President Ken Hackett and Bishop Howard Hubbard, Chairman of the USCCB International Justice and Peace Committee express the Church’s thanks for the Obama Administration’s hard work and dedication to the cause of peace and Sudan and urge ongoing engagement.
The Honorable Hillary Clinton Secretary of State
Dear Secretary Clinton:
As Chairman of Committee on International Justice and Peace of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and President of Catholic Relief Services, we wish to express our gratitude to you and the entire Administration for working to ensure a successful referendum for the people Sudan. Only weeks ago it seemed unlikely the people of southern Sudan would have the opportunity to exercise their right to self-determination. That such an exercise was possible, let alone as successful and peaceful as it was, is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the Administration and others of goodwill.
As you undoubtedly know, much remains to be negotiated and resolved in the months remaining to implement the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Issues of border demarcation, citizenship, oil revenues, and debt allocation will be critical to Sudan’s future, as will concerns for the security and rights of minorities remaining in the north, and tensions in the border areas of Abyei, Southern Kordofan, and Blue Nile. Likewise, the people of Darfur still suffer, and this suffering and insecurity must be resolved to bring peace and development to the region.
The people of Sudan have made great strides in avoiding a return to conflict that until recently had seemed all but inevitable. Significant and sustained humanitarian and development assistance would help consolidate that progress, and provide tangible encouragement that Africa’s longest running war is truly over. It is crucial that the United States remain actively
engaged in Sudan throughout the post-referendum period.
We pledge our support for your contributions to building a future for Sudan where peace and
prosperity are possible.
Most Reverend Howard J. Hubbard
Bishop of Albany
Chairman Committee on International Justice and Peace
Catholic Relief Services
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