Congressman, comic cuffed at Sudan protest

July 20, 2004 at 2:03 PM
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WASHINGTON, July 20 (UPI) -- Rep. Joe Hoeffel. D-Pa., and comedian-activist Dick Gregory were arrested Tuesday during a protest at the Sudanese embassy in Washington.

Hoeffel's wife was also arrested. The three were participating in a daily protest whose goal is a formal declaration by the United States that the African nation is engaged in genocide. The protests are in their fifth week.

Last week, Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., was arrested at the daily demonstration, which is organized by former District of Columbia delegate the Rev. Walter Fauntroy and radio talk-show host Joe Madison.

The protesters accuse the Arab-controlled Sudanese government of supporting genocide by Arab militias against blacks in the Christian south and western Darfur regions.

Before their arrests, Hoeffel and Gregory addressed the crowd, estimated by protest organizer Keith Roderick at about 150 people. Hoeffel expressed his support for a new Senate resolution introduced Tuesday that calls on the Bush administration to declare the mounting humanitarian crisis in Sudan a "genocide."

Sudan a "genocide."

Under the 1948 Genocide Convention of the United Nations, a finding of genocide requires member states to act to prevent genocide from occurring.

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