After visiting the Darfur region to once again draw some attention to the humanitarian crisis there, George Clooney paid a visit to the White House last night to meet separately with Vice-President Biden and President Obama. His goal, as he told Ann Curry last week, was to seek the appointment of a high-level ambassador from the United States to work out a peace treaty for the region. Guess who walked away from those meetings happy last night? From ABC News,
“They assured me and wanted to assure the rest, whoever else is listening, this is high on their agenda,” the Academy Award-winning actor told reporters following the meetings. “This is a huge policy step for us.” Clooney said that Obama and Biden told him that before the White House can send an envoy, there needs to be a full policy in place on Darfur.
“The vice president informed Mr. Clooney about the Administration’s ongoing review of Sudan policy and welcomed his observations from his trip. The vice president thanked Mr. Clooney for his work on this issue, which he believes is an important contribution to the public’s understanding of the conflict in Darfur,” Biden spokeswoman Elizabeth Alexander said.
Clooney was not scheduled to meet with Obama, but after running into him, the president invited him to sit down and talk in the Oval Office. Clooney said Obama and Biden both said Darfur is one of several key foreign policies issues on the administration’s agenda. “That’s good to hear because there was some concern this could fall off the radar. As you know there are quite a few other things going on in the world,” Clooney said.
As Clooney mentioned, this is a huge step forward for addressing the situation in Darfur. The 46-year-old also appeared on Larry King Live last night. Check out the video after the jump.