Actor/activist George Clooney visited the White House yesterday and made a little news: President Obama will meet with Chinese President Hu Jintao this month, and one of their topics will be efforts to help stop violence on the border of Sudan and South Sudan.
"The good news is we feel like there is a commitment at a very high level," Clooney stated after meeting with Obama.
The White House hasn't made any announcements on a China meeting, but Obama will travel to Seoul in late March for a summit on nuclear weapons; a meeting between Obama and Hu in South Korea would not be a shock.
China has declined to get involved in the Sudan dispute, but Clooneytold there is a "window of opportunity:" The violence in Sudan is cutting off some of China's oil supply.
"Suddenly, this affects their economy," Clooney said. "This is a moment we can appeal to China."
Clooney, who attended last night's White House dinner for British Prime Minister David Cameron , has been on Capitol Hill lobbying for increased diplomatic and economic pressure on the Sudanese government to stop attacks on citizens of the newly created South Sudan.
He is not advocating "any form of military involvement," Clooney said. "This is something we have to do diplomatically."
Clooney, sporting a new salt-and-pepper beard, appeared at the White House along with John Prendergast, co-founder of the advocacy group the Enough Project.
It has to be mentioned that he two have developed film of what they call war crimes by the Sudanese.
"This is evidence that will be compiled and used against them ... if they are ever brought to trial," Clooney said.
The Associated Press reported on Clooney's recent congressional testimony:
George Clooney used his Hollywood celebrity Wednesday to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis in the volatile border area between Sudan and South Sudan, offering a firsthand account of the suffering as thousands are forced to take refuge in caves because of daily aerial bombardments.
"What you see is a constant drip of fear," the actor and human rights activist told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Just back from an eight-day trip to the region, Clooney described rocket attacks, death and destruction during a secret, six-hour trip across the border to the Nuba Mountains. He recalled how a 9-year-old boy had his hands blown off.
Teamed with John Prendergast, co-founder of the advocacy group the Enough Project, Clooney made a film that captured the images of crimes against humanity.
The four-minute video showed refugees in caves, the boy with bloody arms and a woman marked by her wounds. In the final image, Clooney stood above what appeared to be a dead man splayed on the ground.
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