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Clooney Hopes Satellites Will Shed Light on Sudan

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(LOS ANGELES) -- Actor and activist George Clooney said he hopes that technology can bring public attention to the border region of Sudan and prevent potential violence and even genocide after a critical referendum there next week.

In an exclusive interview with ABC’s This Week, Clooney talked about the goals of the newly-launched Satellite Sentinel Project, a joint effort backed by the U.N., Google and human rights groups to have satellites monitor the border between Sudan’s northern and southern region.

Southern Sudan will vote next Sunday on whether to break away from the northern part of the country, which has been wracked with violence in the past decade. The Satellite Sentinel Project, backed by Clooney and John Prendergast of the Enough Project, will provide high-resolution images of the border region on the project’s website that the public can monitor, in hopes of drawing attention to the region in case of violence after the referendum.

“If you see actual evidence of those kind of attacks, that's something … that the U.N. can actually work with,” Clooney said. “But for the most part, our job is to say that these things have been happening in the dark for a long time … We're going to be able to … not show it afterwards, but show it beforehand, that there were plans, there are tanks lined up, that there are helicopters online, that are going to … that are about to commit atrocities.”

Clooney said the project, which will cost $750,000 to run, is a cost-effective way to prevent violence, instead of “putting Band-Aids on a wound after the wound has been inflicted.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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