By Mary Beth Sheridan
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Time is running out to salvage a peace accord that ended Africa's longest-running war, a key U.S. official said Wednesday, but he rejected suggestions that the Obama administration is not paying enough attention to the political turmoil in Sudan.
Retired Air Force Maj. Gen. J. Scott Gration, the special envoy to Sudan, acknowledged to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that preparations for a critical element of the peace accord -- a referendum on independence for southern Sudan -- are behind schedule. Many analysts fear that southern Sudan's secession could result in renewed fighting.