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At UN, Statement on Sudan Now "Needs Adjustment," China Says, US Position UNclear?

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, March 27, updated -- As tension mount between Sudan and South Sudan, the US on Monday circulated a press statement to other Security Council members, ostensibly directed at both sides. If no one objected before 4 pm, the Press Statement would be read out and become official.

  As as Inner City Press reported, without response from the US Mission admittedly under a tight deadline that at least two other delegations met, the process on the draft statement was extended to Tuesday.

  Overnight, Sudan's Second Vice President Yusuf announced that the underlying presidential summit between Omar al Bashir and Salva Kiir is being cancelled.

  Tuesday morning in front of the Security Council, while nearly all questions concerned Syria, a Western Permanent Representative told Inner City Press there should be no need to revise the statement despite new events.

  Inner City Press asked China's Permanent Representative Li Baodong about the draft statement. He told Inner City Press exclusively, "we need to discuss that. We got a draft yesterday. Since then there are new developments, we need to adjust that."

  Will China's proposed "adjustments" be accepted by the US? Attempt to ask diplomats of the US Mission have proved fruitless so far.

  In front of the General Assembly on Monday before publication of yesterday's story, Inner City Press asked US Deputy Permanent Representative Rosemary DiCarlo about the delay of the Sudan statement. She was polite but said that only Jeff could answer. But Jeffrey DeLaurentis does not answer. And, the question arose, where is Susan Rice, who generally does answer?

  Perhaps the US, after it said time was of the essence, didn't want to go public with the delay?

   Already, some say, after the closed door briefing of the Council by Thabo Mbeki, the Council will only pass statements that equally blame Sudan and South Sudan, which is not the position of most US-based Sudan activists or, one thought, the Obama administration.

But there was Obama's envoy to Darfur Dane Smith, quoted in Sudan state media telling the Justice & Equality Movement not to try to regime change. So according to Obama, regime change in Libya good, Syria would be good, but not in Sudan, whose President and Defense Minister have been indicted for genocide and war crimes by the International Criminal Court?

Someone should explain all this, but we have no answer from the US Mission to the UN. Watch this site.

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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