Five members of congress were arrested at the Sudanese Embassy during a protest against the senseless killings in Sudan. A Secret Service Agent
gaurding the embassy game them three commands to disperse. They were allowed to finish their speech, and then pulled aside and arrested. They were
taken to a local precent, processed, then made $50 bail after spending two hours in jail.
''For us, this is a minor inconvenience," McGovern said at the police station after his release. ''But there is a genocide going on, and the
world is watching it unfold. For us to spend a couple of hours in jail is nothing."
The lawmakers, along with three of their colleagues and several other activists, demanded that the Sudanese end the killings in Darfur, which has been
the site of a brutal and bloody internal conflict since rebels challenged the Sudanese government in 2003. International agencies estimate that
between 140,000 to 400,000 people have been killed and millions displaced in the conflict, which has spilled over to Chad.
Yesterday's demonstrators read a list of demands that included allowing international peacekeeping troops and humanitarian aid into Darfur, while
Andrew Mutchler, a uniformed Secret Service agent protecting the embassy gave them three commands to disperse. After allowing the lawmakers to make
speeches, Mutchler led each protester aside, bound their hands behind their backs with plastic ties and helped them into the back of a police
McGovern and Olver were read their rights and shared a cell at the police precinct. McGovern said he was arrested once before, at a demonstration to
end apartheid; Olver has no previous arrest record. Representative James Moran, Democrat of Virginia, said he thought authorities dragged their feet
while booking the lawmakers because ''they deliberately wanted us to spend some time in jail."
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What is this? Most people at my local jail spend up to 35 hours in booking before they are sent to their cells. Oh well.
They were technically on private property, so the Sudanese ambassador I am sure had the right to have the agent arrest them.
It is good to see our elected officials taking action in another country in defiance of the unjustified genocide which is happening in Sudan.
Hopefully the UN will send in peacekeepers this year and we can avoid the mess which we had in Rwanda in the early 1990's.
Lantos, a Holocaust survivor, was last imprisoned in 1944 when the Nazis sent him to a labor camp after invading his native Hungary.
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[edit on 4/29/2006 by DYepes]
[edit on 29-4-2006 by DontTreadOnMe]