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Sudan: Overseas Investment

Volume 459: debated on Monday 30 April 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will make representations to the business community to divest from Sudan on ethical and prudential grounds. (131835)

The restrictive measures adopted by the United Kingdom against Sudan are targeted to apply maximum pressure on those who engage in violence or who are responsible for authorising it. They include a travel ban and assets freeze on individuals who impede the peace process or constitute a threat to stability in the Darfur region. Members of the European Union also decided to go further than the arms embargo imposed by the UN and extend the embargo to the whole of Sudan.

We are now pressing our international partners at the UN Security Council to impose further measures on those responsible for the humanitarian crisis through their violations of UN Security Council Resolutions. Those measures include targeted sanctions against individuals engaged in violence or responsible for authorising it, an asset freeze of commercial entities owned by sanctioned individuals, an extension of the arms embargo to cover the whole of Sudan and measures to allow better monitoring of the illegal use of aircraft in Darfur.

We have not yet considered taking steps to encourage disinvestment from Sudan by British companies. However, if the situation in Darfur does not improve then we will have to consider taking further measures.