Vice President Joe Biden is in Nairobi, Kenya, today, meeting with Salva Kiir, his Sudanese counterpart. According to NPR's Gwen Thompkins, the future of Sudan, Africa's largest nation, "appears uncertain."
The country's Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), which settled the civil war between North and South Sudan, calls for Southerners to vote on the question of independence in January, 2011.
In a brief statement that followed his meeting with Hosni Mubarak, the president of Egypt, on Monday, Biden "reaffirmed our commitment to supporting stability in Sudan, including Darfur, and the full implementation of Sudan's Comprehensive Peage Agreement (CPA) and preparing for the referendum on southern self-determination in 2011."
That short sentence speaks volumes. The Obama administration has yet to reach consensus on how the United States should approach the situation, Thompkins reports.
Biden said that, in the wake of Israel's raid on a flotilla that attempted to break its blockade of Gaza, he and Mubarak talked about the situation in the Middle East:
Today, President Mubarak and I reiterated our commitment to reaching a comprehensive peace in the region. The United States recognizes and appreciates Egypt's leadership in support for these efforts. The status quo is unsustainable for all sides. It is vital to make progress in the proximity talks between Israelis and Palestinians to enable the parties to move to direct negotiations as soon as possible that will result in an end to the occupation that began in 1967 and to a two-state solution to the conflict with Israel and a Palestinian state living in peace and security. In addition, we are consulting closely with Egypt, as well as our other partners, on new ways to address the humanitarian, economic, security, and political aspects of the situation in Gaza.
Following the raid, Egypt decided to open its border with Gaza.
According to the White House, South Africa is the next stop on the the vice president's trip. He is scheduled to meet with South African Deputy President Motlanthe, South African Foreign Minister Nkoana-Mashabane, and other world leaders at the World Cup. Biden will also be in the stands at Royal Bafokeng Stadium, where the United States will play England on Saturday.