Darfur, Sudan • Sudan is the largest country by area in Africa • Darfur is a region in western Sudan, approximately the size of Texas • 6 million people used to live in Darfur
Genocide In Darfur • 450,000 dead (from violence, famine, and disease) • 2.5 million refugees and internally displaced persons • 150,000 - 300,000 refugees in neighboring Chad
What is Genocide? United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (1948) “Genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: • (a) Killing members of the group; • (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; • (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; • (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; • (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. “
History of Conflict in Sudan Sudan’s borders encompass many ethnic and religious groups • North: Arab, Muslim • South: African, Christian • Darfur: African, Muslim, Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa tribes Northern Sudan was constructed without ties to Southern Sudan, and the Darfur region wasn’t annexed as a province of Sudan until 1916, almost 50 years after the North and South were unified.
History of Conflict in Sudan • 1956 Sudan gains independence from British rule • Civil war between North and South from 1955-1972 and again from 1983-2002 • South Sudanese not represented in Khartoum government • While oil was discovered in Southern Sudan in the 1970s, the Khartoum government demanded all of the oil revenues be funneled to the national government • Peace agreement in 2003
Beginning of Darfur Conflict • In 2003, two rebel groups from Darfur rise up against the Sudanese government • Sudanese Liberation Movement (pictured) • Justice and Equality Movement The political aim of the rebel groups is to compel to Sudanese government to address underdevelopment and political marginalization of the region .
Government Response • Sudanese government arms Janjaweed militia, comprised mostly of members of Arab nomadic tribes who have been in conflict with settled farmers in Darfur. Janjaweed kill and expel Darfurians • Janjaweed has been translated as “devil on a horse” in Arabic Janjaweed in military fatigues in Geneina.
Government Response The government provides helicopters to bomb villages. A helicopter strafing the village of Labado.
Janjaweed Tactics In addition to killing and expelling members of a village, the Janjaweed burn their food stores so that the survivors cannot return. A government soldier burning the food storage of the villagers in Marla.
Janjaweed Tactics After attacking and looting, Janjaweed begin to burn the village of Um Zeifa
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) & Refugees 2.5 million refugees and IDPs in Sudan and neighboring Chad. Three generations of farmers, formerly self-sufficient, now forced to live in a camp.
IDPs and Refugees Thousands die each month from the effects of inadequate food, water, health care, and shelter in a harsh desert environment. Pictured are graves outside and IDP camp.
Women in Refugee Camps Women collecting wood in Kassab camp.
Rape as a Weapon Rape and gang-rape continually used as a weapon, with motivation of diluting the gene pool. “They grabbed my donkey and my straw and said, ‘Black girl, you are too dark. You are like a dog. We want to make a light baby,’” said Sawela Suliman, 22, showing slashes from where a whip had struck her thighs. ‘They said, 'You get out of this area and leave the child when it's made.’” http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A16001-2004Jun29.html Rape is used to humiliate both men and women, as there exists a stigma against rape in Darfurian Muslim culture
Racial Motivation of the Genocide Reports state the African Arab Janjaweed shout racial slurs as they destroy the villages, claiming that they will kill all non-Arab “Africans” or “Blacks”. While both the Janjaweed and Darfurians have black skin, the Janjaweed persecute the Darfurians because they are non-Arabs. One refugee told New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof that “the Arabs want to get rid of anyone with black skin. . . . There are no blacks left [in the area I fled].”
International Response and Challenges • In July 2004, Congress declared the crisis in Darfur to be a genocide. In September 2004, on behalf of the U.S. government, Secretary of State Colin Powell followed suit. • First time a genocide declared as such while in progress • In February 2005, the U.S. led the U.N. to pass the first resolution to send a peacekeeping mission to Darfur. • September 2006: U.N. resolution authorizing the deployment of 17,000 peacekeepers with a Chapter VII mandate to protect. • But only with the consent of the Sudanese government. • Sudanese government adamantly refuses to consent, as they are sponsoring the genocide.
International Response and Challenges • Currently 7,000 African Union troops on the ground. This is the size of the police force of Dallas in a region the size of Texas • Insufficient mandate to actively protect civilians • Under-funded • Lacking training and technology • Lacking manpower – overstretched
International Response and Challenges • China, Russia, Malaysia and India’s investments in Sudanese oil fund the Khartoum government’s perpetuation of genocide. • China and Russia are also on the United Nation’s security council
International Response and Challenges The US Congress has passed significant pieces of legislation on Darfur. These include funding for peacekeepers in Darfur and reauthorization of economic sanctions against Sudan. • Connection with Sudan in war on terror
What can be done to stop the genocide? • Divestment strategies (personal and institutional) • See sudandivestment.org • Lobby government representatives • Call or write your member of Congress • Donate to relief organizations and the AU • Demand further media attention • Plan or attend a rally or vigil • Tell your friends and spread the word in your community • Visit www.standnow.org for more information. • Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved.
Don’t stand by. STAND UP. standnow.org