Cuts in US Funding for UN Peacekeeping Operations
Threaten Peace in Sudan and Around the World

Washington, D.C.—Today, twelve humanitarian and advocacy organizations sent a letter expressing their concern over cuts to the United States’ dues for UN peacekeeping missions. Both the Senate and House have reduced funds requested by President Bush for the Contributions to International Peacekeeping Account (CIPA). The amount of funding needed to support the already approved peacekeeping missions – including a new mission in the Sudan – is $780 million.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice recently defended the White House’s request for $780 million for the UN peacekeeping budget during a House Hearing on March 9, 2005. She said, “When you think about the peacekeeping function, these are areas of the world where we want to stop the violence, where we want to give people a chance and where American forces are not generally involved.” Rice added, “This is much more cost effective than using American forces. And of course, America doesn’t have the forces to do all of these peacekeeping missions, but somebody has to do them. And the United States has to pay its share of people doing them.”

The letter from the twelve organizations states, “If the current cuts to the CIPA remain in the final conference bill, the U.S. will accrue new arrears to the UN. Furthermore, failing to fully fund the President’s CIPA request and forcing a trade off between peace in Darfur and peace between North and South Sudan threatens to derail one of the top bipartisan foreign policy priorities of the U.S. – restoring peace to the Sudan.”

The letter is signed by the following organizations: Africa Action, Better World Campaign, Bread for the World, Citizens for Global Solutions, International Peace Operations Association, International Rescue Committee, Oxfam America, Physicians for Human Rights, Pittsburgh Darfur Emergency Coalition, Refugees International, Survivors’ Rights International, United Nations Association—USA.