Global Day for Darfur Involves 34 Nations

NEW YORK – Tens of thousands of people all over the world will take part in the Global Day for Darfur on Sunday to call world leaders to take immediate action against the violence in Darfur.

The day of action will see 55 events – rallies, candlelight vigils and conferences – in 34 countries with everyone shouting for one thing: the immediate deployment of United Nations peacekeeping force to war-torn Darfur.

In the meantime, hundreds of volunteer fighters from Sudan's Popular Defense Forces are rallying against U.N. troops from entering Sudan. Any U.N. force that enters would be considered as "invading" even if the order was from the United Nations, said Ahmed Bilal Osman, a presidential adviser, according to Reuters.

"Any country that takes part in this invasion force will enter into a state of war with Sudan," he said.

In the days leading up to Global Day for Darfur, actor George Clooney appealed to the United Nations Security Council for peacekeepers, saying they are the "last political recourse of Darfur victims."'

"... This genocide will be on your watch. How you deal with it will be your legacy, your Rwanda, your Cambodia, your Auschwitz," Clooney said, according to the Associated Press.

Between 170,000 and 250,000 people have died in Darfur since 2003, according to a study published Friday in the journal Science.

Following an April Save Darfur rally in Washington, D.C., a rally in Central Park in New York is expected to draw up to 50,000 people, who will constitute only a small segment of the larger international support on Sunday. New York's rally is said to be the centerpiece of the global day of action. The significance and hugeness of the Global Day for Darfur have drawn ongoing prayers for those being terrorized in Darfur.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the spiritual head of the worldwide Anglican Communion, has joined other faith leaders in expressing concern for Darfur and has published a prayer for Sunday.

"... my prayer as a Christian is that we may live internationally as we seek to live locally: that we are all children of God, with no more or less value in the eyes of God than those whose names and villages we do not know," he had said earlier this year after visiting Sudan."

"We pray for those whose lives are lived on the margins of nations and suffer from the wars that others fight around them," Williams said in a prayer for Sunday. "We pray for the warring factions, that they may see themselves under the gaze of God and those who suffer for their cause. We pray for the peoples of Darfur who are haunted by fear of violence, hunger and hopelessness, that they may continue to be fed, visited and defended. We pray for the work of peacekeepers, negotiators and the humanitarian organizations that security may prevail. We pray for the Government of Sudan and for her unity. We pray for peace in the name of him who is the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ our Lord."

Even after the world shouts and prays for the ravaged nation on Sunday, the Save Darfur Coalition media spokesperson said action will be ongoing until U.N. peacekeepers are on the ground in Darfur.