Friday, March 31, 2006

State Senate Enacts Bill to Divest from Sudan
The Maine Senate voted 33 to zero on March 30th to enact a bill directing the Maine State Retirement System to divest all its holdings from companies doing business in the Darfur region of Sudan. The holdings amount to approximately $50 million of the retirement system’s nine billion dollar portfolio. Maine now becomes the 6th state in the nation to divest its holdings from Sudan. Governor Baldacci has already signaled his intent to sign the legislation.

In the 1980’s, Maine passed similar legislation to divest retirement system holdings from South Africa and Ireland.

Since the conflict in Sudan began, over 400,000 black Sudanese have been killed and over 2 million have been displaced. The attacks routinely involve helicopters and gunships bombing villages and then the Janjaweed [the military] moving in to burn, rape, pillage, and murder.


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