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Warner & Kaine Applaud Appointment of Tom Perriello as U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine applauded U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s appointment of Tom Perriello of Virginia as U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan. Warner and Kaine have consistently pressed the Administration to appoint a Special Envoy for Sudan to coordinate and lead diplomatic efforts to negotiate an end to the horrific violence and facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance. Nearly 4.8 million people have been internally displaced due to the conflict in Sudan—resulting in one of the largest internal displacement crises in the world. An estimated 10,000 civilians have been killed, and approximately 25 million people are in need of immediate humanitarian assistance.

“The ongoing humanitarian crisis in Sudan has left millions of civilians in need of urgent assistance. I am glad to see the Biden Administration appoint my friend Tom Perriello as U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan,” said Warner. “I know that Tom’s diplomatic experience will better our efforts in the region to deliver immediate humanitarian aid and prioritize the safety of civilians who have been displaced by incessant violence. Tom brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role and I look forward to working with him to continue our efforts to support the Sudanese people.” 

“The rapidly worsening crisis in Sudan urgently necessitates the delivery of humanitarian assistance and meaningful steps to protect civilians. I’m pleased President Biden appointed Tom Perriello as U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan to help see those priorities through,” said Kaine, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC). “Tom has the experience and skills needed to lead our strong diplomatic efforts in Sudan. Virginia is home to a large Sudanese diaspora, and I expect he will bring these perspectives with him in this new role. I look forward to working closely with him.”

In December, Warner and Kaine sent a letter urging the Administration to avoid further delays in the appointment of a Special Envoy for Sudan. Since the drastic rise in violence between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) last year, Warner and Kaine have led efforts to increase assistance and protect civilians in the region. Immediately following the outbreak of violence, the senators called for increased humanitarian access and assistance. They also applauded the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) December announcement that it will extend the re-registration period for Temporary Protected Status for migrants from Sudan, which they urged in May. Last year, Warner spoke out about the violence in Sudan and hosted a virtual town hall for Sudanese Americans. Kaine pushed the Administration to ensure the safety and security of U.S. citizens in Sudan and urged both sides to commit to a permanent ceasefire. He held an event in Richmond with members of Virginia’s Sudanese American community to hear their concerns and discuss ways he can be helpful to address the conflict.

Perriello was appointed as U.S. Special Representative for the State Department’s second Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review by President Barack Obama. He also served as Special Envoy to the African Great Lakes and the Democratic Republic of Congo. He previously worked for the United Nations Special Court for Sierra Leone and at the International Center for Transitional Justice in Kosovo, Darfur, and Afghanistan.