U.S. members of congress arrested over Sudan protest

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Eleven protesters, including five members of Congress, were arrested on charges of disorderly conduct and unlawful assembly. Protesting the ongoing atrocities in the Sudan region, Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., a Holocaust survivor and the founder of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, said from the steps of the Sudanese embassy, "The slaughter of the people of Darfur must end."

"The Sudanese government has shown total disregard for the wishes of the global, civilized community. I have no optimism as to the actions of the Sudanese government," Lantos said.

Democratic House members James McGovern and John Olver of Massachusetts, Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, and Jim Moran of Virginia were among the others arrested and released after paying $50 fines after being arrested in front of the Sudanese embassy.

Olver said, "We must hold the Sudanese government accountable for the attacks they have supported on their own citizens in Darfur."

Meanwhile, President Bush met with Darfur advocates this Friday in support of rallies all over the US this weekend against the ongoing genocide in western Sudan.

"The genocide in Sudan is unacceptable... There will be rallies across our country to send a message to the Sudanese government that the genocide must stop. ... I want the Sudanese government to understand the United States of America is serious about solving this problem," Bush said.