The Genocide In Darfur

The conflict between the African settled population and the Arabic-speaking nomads of Darfur has historical roots; however, the current outbreak of violence occurred in February 2003 when two militant groups opposed the Sudanese government. These two groupsincludedthe representatives from the African ethnic groups of the Fur, Zaghawa and Masalits: the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM). Both organizations sought the withdrawal from the region's economic and political exclusion.

Under the pretext of fighting the insurgency, the Sudanese government has involved the militia Janjaweed being founded by local Arabic speaking nomads, whose fighters have been holding the punitive raids against African civilians for already two years. Detachments of the Janjaweed are supported by the regular army: for example, the numerous facts of bombing the civilians with planes and helicopters of the Sudanese Air Force are well known.

According to many observers, the situation is complicated by the fact that the rich deposits of oil have recently been discovered in Darfur, and there is every reason to believe that the ultimate goal of the government of Sudan is the total expulsion of the African population from the oil-bearing areas and even its full destruction. Some experts accuse the Sudan government in the genocide being organized by the classical scheme, proven even in Ottoman Turkey during the destruction of the Armenians and Assyrians. The first step is to uproot the terrorized people from villages, to destroy crops, food supplies and livestock, to poison the water sources. Then the refugees are rounded up in the special camps and are kept there, almost without food and water, thus condemning them to a slow death. Those people who are trying to go beyond the boundaries of the camp in search of food or waterare ruthlessly destroyed. In addition, the Sudanese government strongly prevents any supplies of the humanitarian aid for refugees from other countries and international organizations.

The UN estimates the number of people that have been forcibly displaced by the conflict in more than two million people, and the number of victims in about 180,000 people. However, this number is not accurate, as it does not include data on mortality rates in some camps situated in the remote areas of Darfur. According to the experts, the number of about 300,000 dead being recently voiced by a British parliamentary commission is closer to the reality.

Despite numerous reports from international observers about the critical situation in Darfur, the international intervention is unlikely. Attempts to apply the sanctions against Sudan are not effective due to the clash of interests of major states- the permanent members of UN Security Council. For example, China is the biggest buyer of Sudanese oil, and Russia supplies arms to the Sudan. Second, the protracted conflict in Iraq precludes the possibility of allocating funds from the U.S. and its allies to conduct the peacekeeping operations in Darfur. Recall that the President of the United States of America G.Bush in 2004 described the situation in Darfur as genocide but no real steps to stop the carnage have been taken.

Today there is a group of the peacekeepers in the conflict zone acting with the mandate of the African Union, however, its efficiency is not high, mainly because of their small number, poor funding and limited rights conferred by the mandate.