Office of Rep. Nancy Pelosi
Pelosi Statement on the Passage of the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today on the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act, H.R. 3127, which authorizes additional funding for humanitarian and peacekeeping efforts in the region and strengthens sanctions on those responsible for the genocide. The House passed its version of the bill in April by a vote of 416-3. The Senate amended the bill on September 21 by unanimous consent, dropping a House provision that would allow U.S. states to unilaterally prohibit investment in Sudan. The House passed the Senate version of the bill by voice vote last night.
“Passage of the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act is a significant step in the efforts to end genocide in Darfur. It has been two years since the Bush Administration declared the situation in Darfur as genocide, but the violence is increasing and conditions are deteriorating even further. The American people – from the faith community to students on college campuses – are calling for us all to do more to help the people of Darfur.
“While passage of this legislation is essential, Congress has a responsibility to do more. I am concerned the original language on divestment in Sudan was omitted by the Senate version of the bill. All across the country, states and universities are leading divestment campaigns to ensure that money from American citizens will not go to a genocidal regime. Members of the Congressional Black Caucus, including Congressman Donald Payne of New Jersey and Congresswoman Barbara Lee of California, carefully crafted language ensuring that state governments would not violate any constitutional mandate, treaty, executive agreement, or federal statues if they choose to divest public pension funds from companies whose business in Sudan is deemed to directly or indirectly support the genocide. It is a mistake to not include this provision in the final legislation.
“I call on Congressional leaders to immediately pass the Darfur Accountability and Divestment Act (H.R. 6140), authored by Congresswoman Lee, to prohibit federal government contracts to companies that conduct business operations in Sudan. It is imperative that Members of Congress send a clear and decisive message that we will not be passive while genocide occurs. We must act now while there is still an opportunity to save lives.”
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