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Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

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Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Katiedot on Sat Sep 21 2013, 09:06

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Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

—By Asawin Suebsaeng| Thu Sep. 19, 201

Actors George Clooney and Don Cheadle (co-founders of Not On Our Watch), actress/UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow, and a bunch of non-movie-star activists have signed a letter urging President Obama to shoot down the visa request of Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity related to the conflict in Darfur.

Bashir is planning on attending the United Nations General Assembly's fall session next week, and is required to submit a request for a visa to enter the United States. The Obama administration hasn't announced how it will handle the request. "We would say that before presenting himself to UN headquarters, President Bashir should present himself to the ICC in The Hague to answer for the crimes of which he's been accused," Marie Harf, State Department spokeswoman, told reporters. ICC judges have asked US officials to arrest Bashir if he makes the trip to New York City. (The US, however, is not a member of the ICC, and is thus not legally bound to cooperate with the court.)

Clooney, Cheadle, and Farrow are among Hollywood's more active anti-genocide campaigners. Clooney, in partnership with human rights activist John Prendergast's Enough Project, organized the Satellite Sentinel Project, a network of spy satellites that actually helped the ICC investigate possible war crimes in southern Sudan. "We are the anti-genocide paparazzi," Clooney told Time. Cheadle has co-authored two books with Prendergast. And Farrow is a "Twitter Nazi hunter" in her spare time.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Katiedot on Sat Sep 21 2013, 09:10

And the letter:

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington DC 20500

September 19, 2013


Dear President Obama,

We write with great concern over reports that Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has requested a visa from the U.S. government in order to participate in next week’s UN General Assembly meeting. Our immigration laws prohibit admitting perpetrators of genocide and extrajudicial killings into our country and it is unprecedented for someone wanted by the International Criminal Court for the crime of genocide to travel to the United States. While we recognize that the U.S. government is obliged to
facilitate President Bashir’s visit under the UN Headquarters Agreement, we urge you to do everything in your power to prevent the trip.

We deeply appreciate that the administration has already publicly voiced concerns about this proposed trip and write to suggest additional steps that could dissuade President Bashir from persisting with his travel plans. The administration should consider announcing that, if President Bashir lands in New York, the U.S. Department of Justice will explore filing a criminal case against him under 18 USC 1091. This law, which codifies the Genocide Accountability Act of 2007, allows for anyone present in the United States to be prosecuted for genocide, even if their crimes were committed abroad. By publicly raising the threat of such a prosecution and the specter that President Bashir’s privileges and immunities may not extend to genocidal acts, your administration would make an important
statement about the U.S. government’s commitment to atrocity prevention and accountability.

Declaring that the U.S. will only offer the Sudanese delegation the minimum amount of protection mandated by the UN Headquarters Agreement could also affect the Sudanese government’s decision making process. Invoking the “security reservation” attached to the Headquarters Agreement might even offer our State Department a justification for a visa denial. The U.S. government could defend this decision by citing Presidential Study Directive-10, which unequivocally declares that the
prevention of mass atrocities is a core national security interest. Limiting the number of visas granted to President Bashir’s security detail and imposing specific geographic constraints on those visas could also circumscribe the delegation’s mobility and raise the reputational costs of the trip.

In the event that President Bashir remains steadfast in his intent to travel to United NNations headquarters despite these actions, there are a number of steps that can be taken to impede his travel. Our diplomatic corps should encourage countries along President Bashir’s planned flight path to refuse landing rights for his aircraft for refueling and restrict access to their airspace. The U.S. delegation to the United Nations and Ambassador Samantha Power should also encourage senior UN officials and
delegations from other countries to publicly refuse to meet with President Bashir or his delegation. Drawing on the precedent set by a similar rejection of former Iranian President Ahmadinejad in 2011, our diplomats could also coordinate a walk-out of the UN General Assembly session in protest of President Bashir’s presence.

Former President Bush paved the way to refer the situation in Darfur to the International Criminal Court, and your administration has increased U.S. cooperation with the Court, including facilitating the recent transfer of Bosco Ntaganda to the Hague. Since the UN Security Council acted
under Chapter VII when urging all states to cooperate with the Court in Resolution 1593, and the Court has requested U.S. cooperation with President Bashir’s case in 2009, 2010 and most recently on September 18, 2013, we ask that the administration consider the impact that this trip has on our broader commitment to international justice and accountability.

As Americans concerned by the ongoing atrocities in Sudan, we support your administration’s thoughtful response to this unique diplomatic challenge. Along with the Sudanese diaspora, celebrity activists, human rights organizations, and student groups, we will be amplifying these efforts through our own public activism. The U.S. government’s continued attention to this issue will be instrumental in finding a holistic solution to the challenges facing the Sudanese people.

Sincerely,

George Clooney and Don Cheadle, Not on Our Watch
Mia Farrow, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador
John Prendergast and Omer Ismail, Enough Project
Tom Andrews, United to End Genocide
Pam Omidyar and Randy Newcomb, Humanity United
Amir Osman, Sudan Democracy First Group
Ted Dagne
Bahar Arabie, Unite for Darfur
Jimmy Mulla, Voices for Sudan
Ruth Messinger, American Jewish World Service
Gabriel Stauring, iActivism
Eric Reeves, Smith College
Raymond M. Brown, International Justice Project
Faith McDonnell, Institute on Religion and Democracy
Michael Lieb Jeser, Jewish World Watch
Rabbi David Kaufman, Help Nuba
Eric Cohen, Act for Sudan
Esther Sprague, Sudan Unlimited
Sharon Silber, Jews Against Genocide
Eileen Weiss, New York Coalition for Sudan
Kimberly Hollingsworth, Humanity Is Us
Hannah Finnie, STAND

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by party animal - not! on Sat Sep 21 2013, 11:54

I think this letter is brilliant, considered, and all those other things and the list of signees is so impressive. Given that John Prenderghast and Samantha Power have been colleagues and she's now so involved in government, let's just hope.........

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by it's me on Sat Sep 21 2013, 12:32

Hug1 

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by ... on Sat Sep 21 2013, 15:33

"Anti-genocide paparazzi" is a clever way to put it.

I had no idea that George Bush's administration brought the situation in Darfur to the ICC's attention.  I thought it was as far back as Bill Clinton's.

Anyway, maybe Bashir should be warned and then arrested if he still proceeds. Of course, during his trial he'll argue for "proof."

if President Bashir lands in New York, the U.S. Department of Justice will explore filing a criminal case against him under 18 USC 1091. This law, which codifies the Genocide Accountability Act of 2007, allows for anyone present in the United States to be prosecuted for genocide...

...
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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Mazy on Sat Sep 21 2013, 17:23

Hi Ocean, I'm sure our Genocide Fighting Prince with his SatSentinel.Org can give the ICC much proof. The biggest issue is having him arrested and turned over to them. Also at this point there are many, many witnesses to a lot of his Genocide and War Crimes.

I believe that President Obama's legal teams and advisers are looking into the legality of us arresting Bashir. Now that we have been told by the ICC to arrest him if he steps foot on American soil.

I should do some research about the International Laws that would pertain to this situation. However in all likely hood I would not understand them.

In the beginning of the summer I remember some of us Nicky, It'sMe, Mosaic, PAN, Joanna,Carla, LornaDoone and others I'm sure; talking about feelings we had that soon things might be coming to a head. They seem to be getting stronger. Others like Nigeria was going to arrest him on orders; with-in an hour or so he sneaked out of town. Another African state would not let his plane land. We see slowly a new trend that is more anti than pro.

I truly would like to see him tried and then put in "general population" in prison. Let him get a taste of what he has been handing out. Also this will show others there are consequences for their actions.

For some reason I; and I pray that I'm not wrong, are starting to feel hopeful. My family says I not only have an obsession with George but also with Darfur. Oh well...

Mazy
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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Maggy on Sat Sep 21 2013, 17:52

Clever way of Bashir to avoid death by seeking refuge in the US by a so called 'arrest'.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Mazy on Sat Sep 21 2013, 19:19

Maggy wrote:Clever way of Bashir to avoid death by  seeking refuge in the US by a so called 'arrest'.
Death is to good and easy for him. He needs to be publicly tried, convicted and put in jail. I'm not sure where you are from or if you know what "General population" means. Sometimes I forget that these things could be different things to each of us. Bluntly Bashir will become the "Mrs. of the jail" and will be done to him what he's had done to many. Men in jail have a unique way of dealing with his kind and he will be looking at rape and torture from a completely different angle. He'll be begging for death. I'm trying not to become cruel and vicious towards him, for my sake. God forgives but in his case humanity won't.

He will not be tried or jailed in the US, I wouldn't want to see that. We also have way too many bleeding hearts here. He should be tried and sentenced by his peers and family members of his victims. Justice needs to take place.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Carla97 on Sat Sep 21 2013, 20:07

Maybe quantanamo? It´s still open for foreign visitors, isn´t it? Better than nothing if he can´t be tried where he should.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Nicky80 on Sun Sep 22 2013, 21:16

Thanks for the artical.

I can imagine the US will refuse the visa. I don't think the USA "wants" to arrest Bashir. The US has already other "war" problems. Would be better if another country can arrest him.

To refuse the visa would be the best.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Atalante on Sun Sep 22 2013, 22:37

Tweet her: LINK8) 

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by party animal - not! on Sun Sep 22 2013, 23:44

Would love to, but no Twitter a/c. Anybody?

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

Post by Mazy on Mon Sep 23 2013, 08:34

party animal - not! wrote:Would love to, but no Twitter a/c. Anybody?
PAN post it here of PM me and I will tweet it.

Carla
Maybe quantanamo? It´s still open for foreign visitors, isn´t it? Better than nothing if he can´t be tried where he should.


Thanks for the smile Carla funny, we must let them know we are taking reservations. Thanks<3

Nicky
I can imagine the US will refuse the visa. I don't think the USA "wants" to arrest Bashir. The US has already other "war" problems. Would be better if another country can arrest him.

To refuse the visa would be the best.

I'm confused what is the right thing to do here. I would allow if I was sure we were legally allowed to arrest him and forward him to wherever he would be prosecuted, other wise no. Doesn't matter what else is going on in the US. We must attempt to do the right thing. I will be very disappointed in POTUS if he fails to do what is right for Darfur.

I pushed for him for president like so many others did,(thank God we don't have Roomney) however I'm very sad that he doesn't seem to be doing enough for the Sudan.

I have not sign any petitions for or against Bashir coming to the US of not. So many of the organizations have asked. I know George is against it. But I cannot be a puppet and go along with the crowd. Love u G.

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Re: Read George Clooney and Don Cheadle's Letter Asking Obama To Block an Alleged War Criminal's US Visit

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