Conflict in Sudan - Darfur


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Armed groups, the 'Sudan Liberation Army' (SLA) and 'Justice and Equality Movement' (JEM), began the war. Reasons are cited as lack of economic development which demands a greater share of country’s resources and exclusion from the political administration of Khartoum.
Attacks on towns, government establishments and civilians in Darfur resulted in the deaths of hundreds of policemen and civilians and the breakdown of law and order in Darfur. An area where inhabitants depend on natural resources the severe impact of the continuing climatic changes and droughts on accessibility to land and water has a detrimental effect on the livelihood in Darfur as well as the rest of Sudan.

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Conflict in Sudan - Darfur

  1. 1. Conflict in Sudan - Darfur By Arundathie Abeysinghe Lecturer International Aviation Academy SriLankan Airlines
  2. 2. Introduction • Armed groups, the 'Sudan Liberation Army' (SLA) and 'Justice and Equality Movement' (JEM), began the war • Reasons are cited as lack of economic development which demands a greater share of country’s resources and exclusion from the political administration of Khartoum
  3. 3. Introduction…. • Attacks on towns, government establishments and civilians in Darfur resulted in the deaths of hundreds of policemen and civilians and the breakdown of law and order in Darfur • An area where inhabitants depend on natural resources the severe impact of the continuing climatic changes and droughts on accessibility to land and water has a detrimental effect on the livelihood in Darfur as well as the rest of Sudan
  4. 4. Introduction…. • First, colonizers drew the boundaries of present-day Sudan without heed to the different religious and ethnic groups that already inhabited the territory, which was under joint Anglo-Egyptian control until 1956 • This set the stage for showdowns between the north, populated predominantly by Arab Muslims, and the south, populated largely by animists and Christians of African origin
  5. 5. Introduction…. • The regime of President Omar al- Bashir who came to power after a military coup in 1989 promotes Islamist and Arab-centric policies adding an ethnic element to his administration • Decision making power is centralized with the GOS
  6. 6. Introduction…. • Regional governance has low capacity due to centralization of political power in Khartoum • Dividing of Darfur into 3 states by the GOS has severely weakened the political power in Darfur • Darfur has been re-districted by GOS and appointed their own governors thereby increasing the influence over the region
  7. 7. Conflict Analysis Model Context C.R. - SIPABIO Sources Parties Issues Relationship Power Bond Patterns Outcomes Intervention Behaviors Attitudes /Feelings
  8. 8. • Socio –economic/political setting •2-3% rate in population increase • Widespread poverty and underdevelopment • Most of the economic growth from increased petroleum exports •Economic growth concentrated in the states surrounding Khartoum and revenue of the oil industry remaining with central government thus depriving people of development and alternative employment
  9. 9. Socio –economic & political …. • Main professions are agriculture and pastoral activities resulting in competition for land in Darfur which is 7% of Sudan • There are around 80 tribes and ethnic groups predominantly Muslims, divided between nomadic and sedentary communities in Darfur
  10. 10. Socio –economic & political …. • African agriculturalists consisting of Fur (dominant tribe), Masaalit, Tama,Tunjur etc. while pastoralists mainly includes tribes of Arab descent • Over decades of civil wars have resulted in approx. 5 million internally displaced persons or international refugees ranking Sudan first in the world for displaced persons
  11. 11. Primary Parties to the conflict • The Government of Sudan – GOS •Government security forces •GOS sponsored Black, nomadic , Arab speaking proxy militia group “Janjaweed” formed to subdue the rebellion •The Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) headed by Minni Minawai •Justice and Equality Movement (JEM)
  12. 12. Parties to the conflict… Secondary • Internally displaced persons in Darfur, refugees & civilians • Opposition Parties, Arab Tribes
  13. 13. Parties to the conflict… Tertiary • • • • UN African Union (AU) USA Donors & other international organizations
  14. 14. Culture • Many of the racist attitudes, traditionally directed toward slaves have been redirected to the sedentary non-Arab racist ideology • This ideology plays an important part of the genocide, the sharp distinctions between Arabs and Africans in the racially mixed Darfur region had not been drawn until the ideology of pan-Arabism that came out of Libya made itself felt
  15. 15. Culture…. • They foisted a racial label on a farming people whose way of life they simultaneously disdained and felt threatened by • Blacks in Sudan are seen as inferior to the Arabs, the racism, racial sentiments against non-Arabs have been used & manipulated by the central government
  16. 16. Geography • Darfur is located in the western region of Sudan bordering Libya from northwest and Chad on the west and is susceptible to political events in Chad •Inhabitants are heavily dependent on natural resource base and access to land and water are crucial for sustainable livelihoods •Majority live on agriculture, farming or pastoralist
  17. 17. Geography…. • Continuous climatic change resulting in severe droughts has remained a backburner issue • In 2007 UN Secretary General Ban ki Moon released an editorial in the Washington Post mentions that the ‘’ Darfur conflict began as an ecological crisis’’
  18. 18. Geography…. • 20 year Sahelian drought resulted in increased desertification and decrease rainfall in northern and central Darfur declining the availability of fresh water , deteriorating farmland and grazing areas • Discovery of oil in Darfur in 2005 increased land grabbing and village burning by Janjaweeds
  19. 19. Gender • Rape is a common weapon used in Darfur, an unknown number of women and girls have been abducted, raped, and abused • In Darfur sexual violence is being broadly used as a systematic weapon of war against girls and women • 82% of women were raped while pursuing their normal daily activities and 4% of women reported that the rape occurred while fleeing their home village
  20. 20. Gender…. • Rape is typically accompanied by further violence: 28% of the victims testified that they were raped numerous times, by either single or multiple perpetrators 50% of the victims reported being beaten with sticks, whips, or axes, or inflicted with other physical violence
  21. 21. Gender…. • Women who become pregnant after being raped are often treated as criminals and are often subjected to brutal treatment by police • Rape in Darfur is considered to be genocidal due to the racial nature of the sexual attacks to impregnate women to produce Arabic children
  22. 22. Issues • Racism is at the root of Sudan's Darfur crisis • "Arab militia is the racist, fundamentalist and undemocratic Sudanese state those who call themselves Arabs point to Arab ancestors who arrived as traders both before and after the arrival of Islam and gradually converted local Sudanese to the Islamic faith • Devastated by the drought of early 80s • - Christian Science Monitor
  23. 23. Issues…. • Affected by the spillover of wars between Chad & Libya • Neglect of the region by the desponded central government • Conflicting land management policies of GOS resulted in land grabbing, marginalization, favoritism for politically connected, becoming the norm
  24. 24. ABC Triangle – Rebel Groups Behaviour • Attack s against government forces •bombing, killing, destruction, looting •Refusal to sign peace accords Needs • Recognition & political autonomy •Development & economic stability •Wealth sharing •Security Attitudes •Hatred •Mistrust •Anger •Frustration •Insecurity Context •Geopolitical struggle between Chad,libiya & sudan •Economic marginalization •restriction on resources & movement •drought •Ethnic discriminations •Forced conversions •Forced displacement •Ethnic polarization
  25. 25. ABC Triangle – Government of Sudan Behaviour • Suppression on rebels using force •Ethnic mobilization & extensive use of proxy militias called “Janajweeds” for mass killings in tribal villages •Genocide, mass rape •Manipulation of ethnic & tribal animosities •Destruction of economic livelihood, forced relocations Needs • Political stability •Security/ Survival •Divide & rule •Centralized control of political power & economic resources Attitudes •Mistrust •Anger •Insecurity •Use of force as the solution Context •Terrorist attacks & restriction on movement • Ethnic polarization •Arab bureaucracy over non Arabs
  26. 26. 2003 - Crisis Stages of Conflict Escalation of Conflict Janjaweed attacks Attacks by SLA /JEM DPA 2009 -Capture of Darfur by Sudan Army Confrontation 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
  27. 27. Darfur Rebel Groups Time Line Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) & Justice & Equality Movement attack several towns •Violence by rebels continues •United States describes atrocities being committed in Darfur as "genocide” •Fighting between govt troops and rebels continue and UN Secretary General reports on 1.6 Million displaced and 200,000 refugees in Chad. Report asserts on widespread war crimes and crimes against humanity by the GOS and Janjaweeds • •The two key rebel groups refuse to sign the Darfur Peace Agreement •Violence spreads to Chad •Widespread violence and insecurity persists in the conflict region •Ten members of the African Union force are killed in one of the deadliest attacks to date. •Islamist Darfur rebel JEM kidnaps two expatriate workers from a strategic Darfur oilfield four days before the October 27 Sirte talks Government of Sudan 2003 2004 •Government of Sudan (GOS) sends troops and pro-government militia known as Janjaweeds to counter •UN seeks urgent AID to refugees crossing to Chad •Govt. of Sudan signs a ceasefire agreement in April •African Force send the first troop of protection force in August but Janjaweed attacks continue 2005 •Khartoum administration seeking to head off international action, sets up its own tribunal when UN security council says that persons committing crimes in Darfur could be sent to ICC 2006 •Signing of the Darfur Peace Agreement DPA between GOS and main faction of the Sudanese Liberation Movement •Sudan President rejects the deployment of UN peacekeeping forces but compromise for a joint UN-African Union peacekeeping mission -UNAMID 2007 • Khartoum refuses the issue of International Criminal Court s first arrest warrants over Darfur, for a Sudanese minister and a Janjaweed militia leader. •UN and the African Union prepare to open new peace talks in Sirte, Libya
  28. 28. Time Line – contd… Darfur Rebel Groups •In May Darfur rebels attack the capital of Khartoum and the Un reports a death toll of 300,000 and 2.6 million fled their homes in the 5 years •JEM rejects Bashir’s ceasefire •Qatar holds peace talks between GOS and JEM after 2 years •JEM the main Darfur rebel movement signs a peace accord with GOS in Feb- March prompting President Bashir to declare the Darfur war over 2008 2009 2010 Government of Sudan •GOS continues indiscriminate areal and ground attacks •In the light of a possible warrant by ICC to arrest President Bashir, he pledges cooperation with UNAMID and announces a ceasefire in the region •GOS sends more troops to Darfur as a preventive measure Sudan Army declares a capture of a town in Darfur after a 3 week clash with the JEM rebels ICC issues the final decision on the arrest warrant against President Bashir •President Bashir says he would accept referendum results even if south opted for independence •ICC issues second arrest warrant on President Bashir for charges of genocide.
  29. 29. Conflict Mapping UN –UNHCR, UNICEF,UNDAC UNSC WFP WHO ICC China GOS Demand for political representation and greater share of National wealth AU SLA & JEM Chad – West Chad – West Libya – North Libya – North West West Janjaweeds
  30. 30. Rebels Grievance over economic & Grievance over economic & political marginalization political marginalization The Onion Positions Positions Interests Interests GOS Rebels should be Rebels should be suppressed for violating suppressed for violating agreements with the GOS agreements with the GOS Needs Needs Inclusion in Khartoum Inclusion in Khartoum political admin. & greater political admin. & greater share of resources share of resources Security, Land, Shelter ,, Security, Land, Shelter livelihoods livelihoods Greater power & centralized Greater power & centralized control over politics & control over politics & resources resources Good Administrative system & clear control over resources
  31. 31. Conflict Tree Violence Mistrust Ethnic conflicts Increased population Political marginalization Lack of livelihood k Violation of human rights - genocide Land grabbing Mass disruption to natural resources Rape Starvation Despotic & centralized political system Government & denial of access to natural resources Drought Inequitable access to natural resources Ethnic divisions Unequal resource distribution
  32. 32. The Conflict at a glance People who have dies as a direct results of the conflict Over 300,000 People displace from Darfur Over 2 million People displaced from Darfur to Chad 260,000 Displaced Chadians 160,000 People displace from Central African Republic 155,000
  33. 33. Present situation • Omar al-Bashir will not face trial in the Hague till he is apprehended in a country accepting the International Criminal Court's jurisdiction • Sudan is not a state party to the Rome Statute (signed but didn't ratify)
  34. 34. Present situation…. • “He may not go to trial but he will effectively be in prison within the Sudan itself” - Payam Akhavan, Professor of International Law at McGill University in Montreal and a former War Crimes Prosecutor • Al-Bashir cannot leave Sudan without facing arrest if he enters international airspace
  35. 35. Present situation…. • The Sudanese Government has announced the Presidential plane will be accompanied by jet fighters • Arab League has announced its solidarity with alBashir • Since the warrant, he has visited Qatar and Egypt • Both countries have refused to arrest him
  36. 36. Conclusion • State bureaucracy of Sudan which led to consolidation of power and government while repressing the social movements in the south primarily led to the Darfur conflict •Ethnic and tribal animosities have been manipulated and promoted by GOS to maintain their power base intact and to eliminate competing elements
  37. 37. Conclusion…. • Due to the complexity of the conflict maintaining the peace initiatives into the future remains a tough challenge • A wider span of stake holders must be included in the process towards peace • Land - a prime cause of the conflict, special emphasis to issues relating to environmental change impact over desertification, water access and drought