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Rice Tells ICP Sudan Glasnost “Would Be Nice,” Compare to Myanmar

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 3 -- When U,S Ambassador Susan Rice spoke to the press in front of the Security Council on Wednesday, her first topic was Mali.

   Inner City Press asked her about Sudan, about Omar al Bashir's announcement that political prisoners would be released. What's the US view, Inner City Press asked, of this supposed glasnost in Khartoum?

  That would be nice,” Ambassador Rice said and smiled. Then she added the hope that the term political prisoner be defined as broadly for release as while being taken into custody.

  Also on Wednesday Fatou Bensouda the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, where Bashir has been indicted for genocide, is visiting the US State Department in Washington, meeting Stephen J. Rapp.

  One wonders if the UN not only partying with Bashir, but offering free flights to his fellow ICC indictee Ahmed Harun, will come up between Bensouda and Rapp.

  At a UN press conference on Tuesday, Inner City Press asked April's Security Council president Eugene Richard Gasana if he or Rwanda thought the Council should have given Sudan mediator Thabo Mbeki the press statement he asked for, praising the Sudans for the Implementation Matrix.

  Gasana said the relationship between the Security Council and African Union is improving. But if Mbeki favored a Council press statement for the Implementation Matrix, how much more so for actual releases of political prisoners?

  Forget glasnost - compare it to the West's reaction to Myanmar's releases, notwithstanding or ignoring the violence against Muslims in that country. A cynic or inciter might conclude that religion is the difference. Watch this site.

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