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Film star Clooney remembers violence in Sudan

posted 18 Mar 2012, 11:55 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 18 Mar 2012, 11:55 ]

Actor George Clooney discusses his experience in a restive region of Sudan during an appearance on "Meet the Press."

Film star George Clooney recalled his visit to a troubled region in Sudan on Sunday (March 18) during an appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press."
"There was a lot of dead bodies on the road. But as we got further up and into the mountains, what you see are burned out villages, burned out farms," he said in an interview with show host David Gregory.

Clooney was arrested at Sudan's embassy in Washington on Friday (March 16) in a protest at which activists accused Khartoum of blocking humanitarian aid from reaching a volatile border region where hundreds of thousands of people may be short of food.

The United States has voiced serious concern about the deteriorating conditions in the border region, where Sudanese troops are fighting rebels.

Sudan accuses its newly independent neighbor South Sudan of supporting the rebels but Juba denies the charges.

Clooney told a Senate hearing last week that Sudan's forces were launching repeated attacks on unarmed civilians and preventing aid from reaching a region where U.S. officials say as many as 250,000 people face potentially severe food shortages.

Clooney reiterated this point on on "Meet the Press."

"We saw a lot. We got a good view of what the move is, and the move basically is to hurt them, if you can, they're not that accurate, terrify them for the most part and starve them to death," Clooney said.

Sudan has denied U.S. concerns that famine might break out in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states, although there is almost no independent access to the region, making it difficult to assess the humanitarian situation.

Khartoum has also restricted access of the United Nations and foreign aid agencies to the region, although it recently did allow the return of some U.N. international staff.