Sudan: What's Happening, What Needs to Happen Now?

A public event co-sponsored with the Center for Strategic and International Studies

Highlights of this panel were presentations by Williamson and Natsios. Williamson spoke about Sudan’s contentious political history, which predates British colonization. He stressed that the most urgent element in the country is providing more security and pushed for increased support for the joint U.N./African Union force in Darfur. Williamson recalled his recent visit to Abyei, which recently witnessed an outbreak of fighting between government of Sudan forces and rebel factions. "It looks like the apocalypse," he observed.

Natsios stressed that not all Sudanese from Darfur and the country’s South were united. He also called into question outside efforts to resolve the situation. "There is no international community," he observed. "There are factions within the country that take very different views of what needs to happen." He noted that neighboring countries fear Sudan’s dissolution and that regional players such as Libya, Chad and Eritrea play a larger role in Sudan than the U.S. at present. The U.S., he said, cannot solve Sudan’s problems but can help negotiate a deal.

Archived Audio

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  • Rich Williamson
    U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan
  • Alex de Waal
    Harvard University
  • Andrew Natsios
    Georgetown University
  • Vanessa Jimenez
    The Public International Law & Policy Group
  • Steve Morrison, Moderator Center for Strategic and International Studies