SPONSOR:   

Rep. Blakey & Rep. M Marshall & Sen. Henry ;

 

Reps. Thornburg, Wagner, Booth, Carey, Cathcart, Ewing, Hastings, Hocker, Lee, Maier, Manolakos, Miro, Outten, D. Short, Spence, Stone, Valihura, Ennis, Hall-Long, Johnson, Keeley, Kowalko, Longhurst, McWilliams, Mitchell, Mulrooney, Plant, Schooley, B. Short, Walls

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

144th GENERAL ASSEMBLY

 

HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 9

 

CONCERNING THE HUMAN RIGHTS CRISIS AND THE DIVESTMENT OF DELAWARE'S HOLDINGS IN THE DARFUR REGION OF SUDAN.

 


 


WHEREAS, in February 2003, rebel groups in the Darfur region of Sudan ignited tension in the region by attacking government targets, citing anger over chronic inequalities between ethnic Africans and the ruling Arab elite; and

WHEREAS, the government of Sudan responded to the uprising by arming local militias and launching a military and police campaign to control the rebel groups, a campaign that has escalated into what many observers claim is an attempt by the Sudanese government to rid the area of ethnic Africans; and

WHEREAS, since that time, Darfur has lost an incalculable number of its citizens as a result of the Sudanese government continuing to support and assist the Janjaweed militia in a campaign that has included routine torching of villages, killing and maiming men, looting of food supplies, and systematic raping women and children; and

WHEREAS, an estimated 2.5 million people have fled their homes in Darfur since the conflict began in 2003; and

WHEREAS, while the African Union has made some effort to stop the crisis by mandating the deployment of troops to the Darfur region, it has said that it does not have enough funding to continue the operation for much longer; and

WHEREAS, refugees, who have fled mostly to neighboring Chad, depend on food aid from international donors, but the donors are finding it increasingly difficult and sometimes impossible to deliver help due to the continuing violence; and

WHEREAS, a United Nations report accuses government leaders of implementing a covert “forced starvation” policy while militias prevent food delivery; and

WHEREAS, any investments by the State of Delaware or Delaware companies in the Sudan could enable the Sudanese government.

NOW, THEREFORE:

BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives and the Senate of the 144th General Assembly of the State of Delaware, with the approval of the Governor, that we condemn the genocide occurring in the Darfur region of Sudan and urge President George W. Bush and the Delaware Congressional Delegation to continue to work with the international community to halt these human rights violations, to impose appropriate economic sanctions, and to bring humanitarian assistance and lasting peace to the Darfur region.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Delaware Public Employees Retirement System should divest from foreign companies that have a business relationship with the government of Sudan, fail to support Sudanese civilians, fail to have a corporate governance policy regarding Darfur and are unresponsive to shareholder engagement.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that copies of this Resolution be sent to President George W. Bush, the members of the Delaware Congressional Delegation and all state and local Chambers of Commerce.

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SYNOPSIS

This Resolution urges continued work with the international community to halt human rights violations in the Darfur region of Sudan, to impose appropriate economic sanctions and bring humanitarian assistance to the Sudan.