(CNN) – Hollywood A-lister George Clooney said Monday that the Obama administration is planning to appoint an envoy to Darfur.
The Ocean's Eleven star met with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden Monday night to discuss the humanitarian crisis in Sudan. "I urged them to make the tragedy in Darfur one of their top priorities in foreign policy,” Clooney told reporters outside the White House Monday night. "I've asked them to appoint a high-profile, full-time envoy reporting directly to the president."
During the campaign, Obama promised to appoint a special envoy to deal with the Darfur issue and to implement the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which ended the decades-long civil war between the North and South.
Clooney said Monday that "before they can send an envoy, they have to have a full foreign policy, but they said that they would appoint a full-time, high-level envoy that would report directly to the White House."
"...This is a difficult situation. It's not going to get much better for a long time," he said, but added that President Obama and Vice President Biden had assured him that the situation was "high on their agenda" and will be handled on the senior-most level. "This is important. It's not about government money, and it's not about government troops. It's about involvement, it's about diplomacy," said Clooney.
Clooney recently returned from a trip to the region where he visited refugee camps and toured Sudanese neighborhoods. "I'm not there as a sort-of policy-nut. I was just there to tell him what I saw and hope that there was some way I can amplify anything that they were doing," he said Monday.