information & details
Protest / Demonstration
Justice for Darfur -- Rally and March to Stop Genocide in Darfur, Sudan
April 30 (Sunday),
Westlake Park, 4th & Pine, downtown Seattle
Justice for Darfur, a group of local high school students
Students from Seattle's Lakeside School are leading a rally and march to raise awareness about the genocide currently taking place in Darfur, Sudan. 400,000 people have been killed and 2,500,000 people have been displaced in the last three years. This student-organized and student-run march is a step towards ending the atrocities in Darfur.
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In the last three years, Sudanese government-sponsored militias have killed 400,000 and displaced 2,500,000 people in the Darfur region of Sudan. The United Nations has termed it the greatest humanitarian crisis in the world today. Students from Seattle’s Lakeside School are taking the initiative to raise awareness about the genocide in Darfur.
Hoping to pressure the US Government to take leadership in supporting effective actions to bring peace and justice to the people of Darfur, the students are leading a rally and march in downtown Seattle on Sunday, April 30. Seattle will join Washington, DC, as well as cities and communities around the nation to raise a public voice against the killing, rape, violence, and destruction that has been perpetrated upon the Sudanese people. “The inaction of the international community in the face of such an enormous humanitarian crisis is appalling and inexcusable,” says Andrea Jones, Lakeside senior. “After the tragedy of Rwanda’s 1994 genocide, our government vowed never to let it happen again. It’s happening again. As students, we hope to bring together voices in the community to mobilize and express our commitment to aid the people of Darfur. The world can no longer sit by while thousands of people are suffering at the hands of a genocidal regime. This march is open to everyone, and we hope that adult members of the Seattle community will join us in a push for action.”
In 2004, the United States Congress, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and President Bush unanimously called the situation in Darfur “genocide.” The background of the crisis is mired in complexities, its origins tracing back to conflicts over oil, race, land, and resources between ethnic groups, between rebel factions and the Khartoum government, and between nomads and farmers. The victims of the atrocities are primarily members of the Zaghawa, Masalit, and Fur, ethnic ‘African’ tribes that have lived in Darfur for hundreds of years. The crisis has been growing for three years, the daily death toll now estimated at 100 people. The international community, however, has been and continues to be passive and ignorant of the atrocities in Darfur.
The April 30 event aims to educate and raise awareness throughout the Seattle community. Information about Darfur as well as resources and action steps will be provided. Postcards will be filled out and collected to send to President Bush as part of the Million Voices for Darfur Campaign (www.MillionVoicesForDarfur.org) that challenges President Bush to live up to his response to the Rwandan genocide: “Not on my watch.” This event is a step towards bringing an end to the tragedy in Darfur.
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