With the glitz of the Oscar and awards season fading away, George Clooney has turned his attention to a far more serious matter, one close to his heart: The volatile Sudanese region of Africa.
According to the Associated Press, The Descendants star/human rights activist met with South Sudan's minister of defense and a regional governor last week, and also made the dangerous crossing into Sudan's Nuba Mountains region to meet with civilians forced to seek shelter in caves due to aerial military attacks.
The conflict along the Sudan-South Sudan border has increased following last year's secession of South Sudan; South Sudan has accused Sudan of stealing its oil, threatening to shut down its oil industry, and a hunger crisis looms. Clooney was there in January 2011 to observe the vote to secede, part of a peace deal to end more than two decades of civil war. Following that visit, the star helped found the Satellite Sentinel Project, which tracks military movements/actions using satellite imagery, with the intention of bringing attention to hostilities and potentially heading off violence.
According to the AP, a Wednesday hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is scheduled to examine the Sudan oil dispute and the limited access aid groups are being given to the country's southern regions.