Clooney says White House will appoint Darfur envoy

George ClooneyWashington, February 24 : Hollywood actor George Clooney, who met U. S. President Barack Obama on Monday night, revealed that the White House would be appointing an envoy to war- and famine-ravaged Darfur, Sudan.

"They said they would appoint a full-time, high-level envoy that would report directly to the White House. This would be a huge policy step," Politico. com quoted the actor, who has repeatedly travelled to Darfur, as telling reporters.

"It''s good to hear because there was some concern that this could fall off the radar," he added.

Clooney said the administration "assured me that Darfur is one of a small handful of foreign policy reviews being taken at the senior-most level."

He revealed that he held separate meetings with Obama and Vice President Joe Biden to convince them to make Darfur one of their top priorities, and to appoint an envoy.

"They assured me and wanted me to assure the rest of whoever it is that is listening that this is high on their agenda," he said.

He also revealed that his White House visit came as the International Criminal Court was expected to indict Sudan's president, Omar al-Bashir.

"You have to make it known that the actions of this government are not acceptable," he said.

As regards his recent Darfur visit with New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, Clooney said: "It was enlightening in a lot of ways."

Though he said that a U. S. envoy was a pivotal step toward turning around the situation in Darfur, the actor added: "It''s a difficult situation. It''s not going to get much better for a long time."

When asked about any foreign policy issue he might have discussed with Obama and Biden, Clooney laughed and said: "No, I''m not there as some policy nut," he said. "I was just there to tell them what I saw and hope that there was some way that I could amplify anything that they were doing." (ANI)