February 3, 2013
On January 21, 2013 Act for Sudan and genocide scholars wrote a letter to the German Foreign Minister asking them to cancel their Sudan investment conference. Several news agencies have since reported on the issue.
(MintPress) – At least two Sudanese nationals were arrested last Tuesday by German authorities while protesting among dozens of activists outside a Sudan economic forum at the German Federal Foreign Office in Berlin.
Four additional activists were injured when German police used violence against the crowd. Civil society groups claim police violence was unjustified since the group had obtained a permit for the peaceful demonstration.
According to a female Sudanese activist’s account of the event: “One police officer beat one of the protester[s] on his face and broke his nose because the protester tried to pull back his friend from the police. Then, a lot of police officers came very close and began pulling and arresting other people.”
In testimony to the Sudanese nonviolent resistance movement, Girifna, the activist explained how German police did not allow enough time for protesters to translate police messages into French, English and Sudanese before intervening with violence…
The article went on to say:
Prior to the conference, Act for Sudan, an alliance of American activists and Sudanese U.S. residents advocating an end to mass atrocities in Sudan, coordinated an open letter urging German officials to cancel the forum.
The letter, signed by 68 international organizations, 14 genocide scholars and other notable human rights advocates, called for the cancellation of the conference, saying it “places Germany squarely in the role of generating financial support for the genocidal Sudanese regime.”
According to the letter, “The National Congress Party (NCP) regime in Sudan, led by a president indicted by the International Criminal Court for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, is causing the death, starvation, displacement and destruction of livelihood of Sudanese civilians in Darfur, Nuba Mountains/South Kordofan and the Blue Nile state.”
German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said the conference, organized by the German-African Business Association and the Ghorfa Arab-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, was aimed at supporting the peace process between Sudan and recently-independent South Sudan.