Press Release / / 02.01.22

Today: U.S. Senate Hearing on Sudan – “Decisive Action” Urged

“Decisive Action” on Coup Leaders Urged as U.S. Senate Holds Hearing Today on Sudan

February 1, 2022 (Washington, DC) – The Sentry welcomes the news that the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) will hold a full committee hearing today at 10:00 am EST on “Sudan’s Imperiled Transition: U.S. Policy in the Wake of the October 25th Coup, featuring distinguished representatives of the US Government and civil society organizations.

J.R. Mailey, Director of Investigations at The Sentry, said: “The Sentry Welcomes the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s hearing on Sudan and urges decisive action to hold the perpetrators of the coup accountable.”

Justyna Gudzowska, Director of Illicit Finance Policy at The Sentry, said: “As there is no end in sight to the violence, it is time for the US Government to take decisive action and impose consequences on the perpetrators of the coup, those responsible for the ensuing violence, and—critically—their business interests. In order to get Sudan’s transition back on track, the warped incentive structure that led to the coup needs to be confronted head-on.”

John Prendergast, Co-Founder of The Sentry, said: “The US Government should impose targeted network sanctions on the perpetrators of the coup, as well those involved in the detentions and violence following the coup. Any new sanctions should be designed to limit the impact of sanctions on ordinary Sudanese.”

The Sentry also reiterates key recommendations made in a recent briefing report and urges Congress, in particular members of the SFRC, to pressure the Administration to take more decisive action and deploy the vast array of financial pressure tools at its disposal. Those recommendations include:

  • The sanctions should target the business interests of the Sudanese military and security agencies, such as companies linked to the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), and their commanders. The mining sector is another potential target, given its links to security-affiliated companies.
  • To expand the use of tools beyond sanctions, the US Government should issue advisories highlighting illicit finance risks related to Sudan’s military-led government. For example, FinCEN could issue an advisory identifying the risks of money laundering associated with military and security-affiliated companies.  Alternatively, the US Government could issue a multi-agency advisory warning private sector entities of the elevated risk of doing business with entities tied to the military and security sectors.
  • Most importantly, any financial pressure tactic should take into account the complicated legacy of sanctions in Sudan and be accompanied by robust public diplomacy, clearly indicating the ultimate policy objectives of the actions and a path to removal of the sanctions. Outreach should be conducted to the private sector to minimize wholesale derisking of the country and collateral impacts on the population.

Read The Sentry’s briefing report “A Strategy for Revitalizing Sudan’s Democratic Transition”: https://thesentry.org/reports/strategy-revitalizing-sudans-democratic-transition/
For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact: Greg Hittelman, Director of Communications, gh@thesentry.org

About the Sentry

The Sentry is an investigative and policy organization that seeks to disable multinational predatory networks that benefit from violent conflict, repression, and kleptocracy.

Pull back the curtain on wars, mass atrocities, and other human rights abuses, and you’ll find grand corruption and unchecked greed. These tragedies persist because the perpetrators rarely face meaningful consequences. The Sentry aims to alter the warped incentive structures that continually undermine peace and good governance. Our investigations follow the money as it is laundered from war zones to financial centers around the world. We provide evidence and strategies for governments, banks, and law enforcement to hold the perpetrators and enablers of violence and corruption to account. These efforts provide new leverage for human rights, peace, and anti-corruption efforts.

Launched in 2016, The Sentry produces hard-hitting investigative reports and dossiers on individuals and entities connected to grand corruption and violence. We advocate for the use of tools of financial and legal pressure, including anti-money laundering and illicit finance measures, targeted network sanctions, criminal prosecutions, compliance actions by banks and other private companies, and asset recovery. As a result of our work, money laundering routes have been exposed and shut down, assets have been frozen, travel has been banned, and corrupt networks have been cut off from the international financial system. Through strategic partnerships with governments, global banks, and other private and public organizations, The Sentry has succeeded in creating real consequences for many of the officials and commercial actors perpetuating and profiting from war, mass atrocities, and other human rights abuses.

Co-founded by George Clooney and John Prendergast, The Sentry is a strategic partner of the Clooney Foundation for Justice.