1. In December 2010, the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development (FAAE) issued a report on the referendum in Sudan, wherein one of the key recommendations reads:
Canada should send a high-level delegation that includes Ministers and parliamentarians to both North and South Sudan […] in order to communicate its continuing interest in a peaceful future for the Sudanese people, including in Darfur. The delegation should assess, with civil society, needs on the ground and establish with governments the most effective types of assistance Canada can contribute toward optimal outcomes.
Because this recommendation was arrived through a bipartisan committee process and to signal Sudan Canada’s continuing commitment in the region, STAND calls for the government to implement this recommendation as soon as the new session of parliament takes place.
2. Civil society participation in the Darfur peace process is essential if a sustainable peace is to occur. The inclusion of Darfur civil society in the Doha peace consultations will give the process the legitimacy it requires but is still fraught with difficulty. Canada has extensive experience in including civil society in public consultations and therefore should call on:
The fair representation of Darfuri civil society.
There is an over representation of government National Congress Party (NCP) members as well as war crimes perpetrators and underrepresented with Darfur diaspora, refugees, internally displaced persons (IDPs), women and northern Darfur leaders.
The lifting of security measures and restrictions on civil society members that hamper their participation in the consultations.
Meetings are hampered by bureaucratic delays, airport and airline restrictions as well as threats from the government of Sudan against participants (the underrepresented).
UNAMID (United Nations African Mission in Darfur) to continue to organize civil society members and facilitate their participation in the civil society consultations in Darfur and Doha.
Because UNAMID is responsible for organizing the civil society track of the peace process, donors like Canada must ensure it has the resources and capacity to undertake this role.
3. Canada should engage more actively in multilateral diplomacy at the UN to bring a renewed sense of urgency to the Darfur issue and rally greater support for conflict resolution processes. Avenues at the UN include:
1. As a co-chair of Friends of UNAMID, Canada should reach out to other nations to persuade them to join in the peacebuilding and peacekeeping process and, where possible, provide the resources it requires. These include: two medium transport units, a level II hospital, an aerial reconnaissance unit, 13 medium utility helicopters, and adequate medical facilities that meet UN standards.
2. Canada’s membership on the UN Human Rights Council should be used to address the issue on a regular basis.
3. Embolden Canada’s ambassador to speak out at the UN General Assembly.