On 29th February 2016, Baroness Cox asked the government “what assessment they have made of continuing military offensives against civilians in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan by the Government of Sudan.” The Bishop of Durham, the Rt Revd Paul Butler, asked a supplementary question.
The Lord Bishop of Durham: My Lords, in noting that my friends the right reverend Prelates the Bishop of Leeds and the Bishop of Salisbury have particular links with Sudan, is the Minister aware of the key role played by the Anglican Episcopal Church in Sudan in peacemaking, maintaining ministry and pastoral support on the ground in these areas? Will the Government pressurise the Sudanese Government to cease the illegal confiscation of church properties and the oppression of Christian people, especially those who are trapped in the Blue Mountains and South Kordofan?
Baroness Verma: My Lords, the right reverend Prelate is of course right to raise the important role that faith communities play, and we continue to ensure that part of the conversations we have with the Sudanese Government is about enabling people to live freely to practise the religions that they wish to practise. These are difficult and challenging situations but the Government continue to press hard to make sure that the concerns raised in your Lordships’ Chamber are raised there.