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With the recent lifting of US sanctions on Sudan, Baroness Cox presses the government over what it is doing to protect human rights, ensure peace, and support humanitarian assistance in the country. You can search Baroness Cox’s Questions for Written Answer here.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what changes they have identified regarding the protection of human rights in Sudan, in the light of their support for the decision taken by the government of the United States to lift sanctions on Sudan.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon:
The UK remains concerned about the human rights situation in Sudan, and Sudan is a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. We used the fourth session of the Strategic Dialogue this month to agree steps that the Government of Sudan would take to make further progress on human rights issues. We raised discuss specific issues including sexual and gender based violence, freedom of religion or belief, freedom of expression, and the Convention Against Torture.
The UK welcomed the decision made by the United States permanently to lift bilateral economic sanctions on Sudan, following its judgement that progress had been made in five key areas. These included humanitarian access to conflict-affected regions, non-interference in South Sudan, and maintaining the Government’s cessations of hostilities in Darfur and the Two Areas.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that the government of Sudan upholds its ceasefire agreements in South Kordofan and Blue Nile States.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon:
The UK welcomes the reduction in conflict between government forces and the armed opposition in the Two Areas in recent months, as well as the extension by the government of Sudan of the unilateral cessation of hostilities until 31 December 2017. In the most recent round of the UK-Sudan Strategic Dialogue on 16 October, we urged the Government of Sudan to extend this further.
We continue to urge both sides to engage constructively with the African Union High Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) peace process in order to agree upon a permanent ceasefire and unfettered humanitarian access.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what action they are taking to guarantee humanitarian access to civilian populations in South Kordofan and Blue Nile States.
The UK government welcomes the Government of Sudan’s acceptance of the US proposal to provide humanitarian aid to the South Kordofan and Blue Nile States. During the most recent round of the UK-Sudan Strategic Dialogue on 16 October, the Government of Sudan reaffirmed their continued commitment to this proposal. We have continued to urge the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – North (SPLM-N) to immediately agree to the US proposal, in order to enable humanitarian aid to reach those in rebel controlled locations in the Two Areas.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they are giving any assistance in relation to cases of Acute Watery Diarrhoea in Sudan.
The UK is one of the largest humanitarian donors to Sudan. Through the Department for International Development, we are the largest contributor to the Sudan Humanitarian Fund, which has provided over $2.5 million via the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, and other NGO partners for preventative and treatment support to those affected by Acute Watery Diarrhoea. The UK is also a major contributor to the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), which has also provided nearly $2 million funding towards prevention and treatment of this disease in Sudan.
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