About the Author: Major General (Ret) Scott Gration serves as the President’s Special Envoy to Sudan.
On Tuesday, I participated in the ‘Ask U.S.’ live stream video question and answer session at the White House. Samantha Power, NSC Senior Director for Multilateral Affairs, and I answered questions posed to us by Jerry Fowler, the President of the Save Darfur Coalition, and Layla Amjadi, the Student Director of Stand (the student-led division of the Genocide Intervention Network). In the lead up to this event, the Save Darfur Coalition and STAND asked their members to both vote on which questions should be asked and to submit additional questions for consideration. We are eager to continue an active and robust dialogue with the advocacy community, and this unique event allowed us to engage directly with thousands of members of the Save Darfur Coalition and STAND.
The questions that Jerry and Layla posed touched upon a range of pressing concerns, inquiring about the administration's benchmarks for incentives and pressures, the circumstances in which internally displaced persons in Darfur might return home, the risks surrounding the 2010 elections in south Sudan, the importance of engaging China and Russia on the path forward, and the indispensability of including Sudanese civil society in the peace process. I found the exchange to be extremely useful and hope those who followed it online did as well.
You may watch the discussion on WhiteHouse.gov if you were not able to watch it live on Tuesday.