Global Policy Forum

Archived Articles Sudan


UN Documents

Report of the Panel of Experts Concerning the Sudan (October 10, 2006)

In the October 2006 report, UN experts maintain that all parties operating in Darfur violate the arms embargo. The document points particularly to the Sudanese government, which supplies Chadian rebel forces with arms. UN experts said Chadian insurgents maneuvering in Darfur, along with Sudanese armed forces and Janjaweed, "pose a significant threat to peace and security" in the region. Khartoum refuses to cooperate in the implementation of UN resolution imposing an embargo.

Resolution 1709 (September 22, 2006)

With a unanimous vote, the Security Council has extended the mandate of the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) until October 8, 2006, with the intention of further renewal. The resolution comes after Secretary General Kofi Annan's earlier warning that Darfur heads for disaster. In extending the mandate, the Council affirmed that the situation in Sudan constitutes a threat to international peace and security.

Resolution 1706 (August 31, 2006)

Acting under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, the Security Council decided to expand the mandate of the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS) to use all necessary means within its capabilities to protect civilians under threat of violence. According to the resolution, the UN should deploy 17,000 peacekeepers in Darfur. While confronted with Khartoum's refusal to have international troops on its grounds, the Council invites the consent of the Sudanese government.

Resolution 1679 (May 16, 2006)

Security Council Resolution 1679 aims at speeding up the transition of the African Union peacekeeping mission (AMIS) in Darfur to a larger UN force. The US-drafted resolution threatens sanctions against any group that attempts to hinder or prevent implementation of the peace agreement between the Sudanese government and the Sudan Liberation Army. While Khartoum has long been opposed to the deployment of UN troops, Information Minister Zahawi Ibrahim Malek has announced that Sudan is willing to negotiate with the UN.

Resolution 1672 (April 25, 2006)

The Security Council adopted Resolution 1672 imposing sanctions on four Sudanese nationals accused of war crimes in Darfur. China, Russia, and Qatar abstained from voting, arguing that sanctions would interfere with the Abuja peace negotiations. The US-sponsored resolution places restriction on the assets and international travel of two rebel leaders, a former Sudanese air force chief, and the leader of a pro-government militia. Although the Council ordered sanctions against human rights violators in March 2005, the vote marks the first time sanctions are applied against individuals directly involved in the Darfur conflict.

Resolution 1593 (March 31, 2005)

The Security Council has decided to refer perpetrators of human rights abuse in Sudan's Darfur region to the International Criminal Court (ICC), bringing an end to a long-standing discussion between Council members and overcoming the threat of a US veto. The adoption of Resolution 1593 importantly marks the first time the Security Council has referred a case to the ICC. But critics complain that the decision to exempt "States not Party to the Rome Statute" from compliance creates dangerous double standards, and amounts to no more than a trade-off in return for Washington's vote.

Resolution 1663 (March 24, 2006)

Security Council Resolution 1663 asks Secretary General Kofi Annan to "expedite the necessary preparatory planning for transition" from the African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur (AMIS) to a UN operation by April 24, 2006. The Council also requests that the UN peacekeeping mission to Southern Sudan (UNMIS) intensify its efforts to coordinate closely with the African force during the transitional period. Finally, the body calls on Annan to make recommendations for dealing more effectively with the Lord's Resistance Army, the Uganda-based rebel group which the Council condemned for human rights abuses.

Resolution 1591 (March 29, 2005)

In response to the failure of all armed parties in Sudan to comply with previous Security Council resolutions, the Council has ordered a travel ban and a freeze on all assets for human rights violators in Sudan. The resolution does not include an oil embargo, which China would almost certainly have vetoed. The document is a modified version of an earlier US draft resolution, which called for the establishment of a peacekeeping mission as well as sanctions, including a freeze on the country's "economic resources."

Resolution 1590 (March 24, 2005)

The Security Council has established UNMIS, the United Nations Mission in Sudan, which will consist of 10,000 UN forces and will work closely together with the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS). Peacekeepers will oversee the implementation of the ceasefire and monitor the North-South Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which foresees "disarmament, demobilization and reintegration" of armed forces. The UN will not deploy troops to Darfur, where only African Union forces attempt to bring a halt to ongoing human rights violations.

Second Report of the Panel of Experts Concerning the Sudan (April 19, 2006)

This report from the UN panel of experts on Sudan advises the Security Council to impose further sanctions on the government and rebel Sudan Liberation Army "as collective entities rather than as individuals" for impeding the peace process. The report also recommends that the Council expand and strengthen the arms embargo, as Khartoum continues to send armed troops and supplies to Darfur without seeking the panel's approval as required by resolution 1591. Finally, the world body should consider establishing a no-fly zone over the entire Darfur region for all government aircraft.

Communiqué of the 46th Meeting of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union (March 10, 2006)

The African Union (AU) decided to extend the mandate of its peacekeeping mission in Darfur for six months in the hopes of reaching a peace agreement between the Sudanese government and rebel groups by April 30, 2006. The AU also agreed to "support in principle" transforming its mission into a UN force when its mandate expires on September 30, 2006. The decision represents a compromise between the wishes of countries such as the US and France, who want the UN to take over and reinforce the AU force as soon as possible, and the Sudanese government, which hopes to keep the UN from ever assuming control of the mission.

Report of the Panel of Experts Concerning the Sudan (January 30, 2006)

This report from the UN panel of experts on Sudan reveals that arms continue to enter Darfur despite the Security Council-imposed arms embargo. Chad, Eritrea, and the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya violate the weapons ban by providing "arms, logistical support, military training and political support" to rebel groups such as the Sudan Liberation Army. The panel recommends that the Security Council extend and strengthen the embargo and consider targeted financial and travel sanctions against specific individuals.

Draft Security Council Resolution on Sudan (February 14, 2005)

The US has circulated a draft resolution, calling for the establishment of a UN mission in Sudan (UNMISUD) to monitor the Comprehensive North- South Peace Agreement, and for the imposition of measures against those "who impede the peace process [and] constitute a threat to stability in Darfur and the region." The draft resolution fails to address the question of impunity in Darfur and a possible ICC referral, simply stating, "perpetrators [...] must be brought to justice through internationally accepted means."

Report of the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur to the UN Secretary General (January 25, 2005)

This report documents violations of international human rights law committed by "all parties" in the Darfur region of Sudan. It finds that the atrocities do not legally constitute "genocide" but recognizes that such crimes against humanity "may be no less heinous than genocide." The commission recommends the Security Council refer the situation to the International Criminal Court.

Security Council Resolution 1574 (November 19, 2004)

To encourage progress in peace talks between Khartoum and the Sudanese Liberation Army, the Security Council decided to hold an extraordinary meeting in Nairobi. Unable to impose sanctions, the Council wants to tempt the Sudanese government and rebel forces into ceasing all violence with the prospect of large sums of international aid. This resolution further calls on the African Union to expand its mission in Darfur and stresses the need for human rights monitors in the region.

Security Council Resolution 1564 (September 18, 2004)

Security Council Resolution 1564 notes the Sudan government's failure to disarm the Janjaweed militia, provide security for civilians, and bring perpetrators of the violence to justice. The Resolution calls on member states to support an expanded African Union mission in Darfur and requests an international commission of inquiry into genocide. The Council again threatens to "consider additional measures," possibly involving the petroleum sector, should the Sudan government fail to comply.

Security Council Resolution 1556 (July 30, 2004)

Security Council Resolution 1556 imposes an arms embargo on all non-governmental combatants in Darfur, including the Janjawid militias. The Council threatens to "consider further actions" under Article 41 of the UN Charter if the Sudanese government fails to disarm the Janjawid within 30 days. Article 41 gives the Council a wide range of non-military powers including "complete or partial interruption of economic relations." The Resolution also endorses the deployment of a protection force by the African Union (AU) to monitor the April 2004 ceasefire in Darfur.

Security Council Resolution 1547 (June 11, 2004)

The Security Council unanimously voted to send an advance team to Southern Sudan to prepare for a peacekeeping mission in the region. Yet even as it welcomed the North-South peace agreement, the Council called on involved parties to "bring an immediate halt to the fighting in the Darfur region."

 NGO Documents

Darfur Destroyed Ethnic Cleansing by Government and Militia Forces in Western Sudan (May 2004)

Human Rights Watch has released a second report condemning the Sudanese government for "ethnic cleansing" and other human rights violations in Darfur. Instead of fighting only the rebel groups, the government has targeted the whole civilian population for revenge. Kartoum has also broken its promise on providing "unhindered humanitarian access" and wiped out evidence of the atrocities.

Sudan: Now or Never in Darfur (May 23, 2004)

The ethnic cleansing of 30,000 civilians in Darfur, which the international community failed to prevent, is already an irreversible fact. With an additional 350,000 lives at peril due to famine, disease and the continuous killings by government-supported Janjaweed militias, can the UN still claim that the crisis in Darfur is under control and that it demands no urgent action? (International Crisis Group)

Sudan, Oil and Human Rights (2003)

This Human Rights Watch report provides detailed maps outlining oil concessions in Southern and Central Sudan, ethnic geography of the area, as well as information on the escalation of war and the peace efforts that followed. The report further details Chinese, European and US involvement in Sudan and makes a number of recommendations to governments, companies and international organizations.

Sudan: Saving Peace in the East (January 5, 2006)

Conflict between the Sudanese government and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) could escalate into full-blown war, warns the International Crisis Group (ICG). Under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, the rebel group must withdraw from eastern Sudan by January 9, 2006. The ICG fears that once the SPLM withdraws, a full-scale conflict could erupt between the SPLM's former insurgent ally, the Eastern Front, and the Sudanese army for control of the eastern region. To defuse the situation, the UN should without delay send a special envoy to mediate negotiations between the Sudanese Government and the Eastern Front.

UN: Put Sudan's Top Leaders on Sanctions List (December 12, 2005)

Human Rights Watch calls for the Security Council to impose sanctions and for the International Criminal Court to conduct an investigation into Sudanese President Omar El Bashir and other senior officials' role in crimes against humanity in Darfur. The Sudanese government is suspected of deploying the military and informal militias to attack civilians, in a brutal response to anti-government rebel groups.

Darfur Deadline: A New International Action Plan (August 23, 2004)

This International Crisis Group report lambastes the international community for its weak and slow response to the Darfur crisis. The report calls on the UN to enforce targeted sanctions and an arms embargo against the government, and stresses the need for international support for an African Union mission. As Darfur peace talks begin in Nigeria, the report highlights the need to "maximise linkages and leverage" between these talks and the closely related government/SPLA talks regarding Sudan's North/South war.

Darfur Documents Confirm Government Policy of Militia Support (July 19, 2004)

Although the government of Sudan consistently denies aiding the Janjaweed militas, governmental documents released by Human Rights Watch demonstrate the contrary. The documents suggest that the government supports, even directs, the Janjaweed's recruiting efforts, provides the milita with arms and grants legal impunity to militia members.

Rape as a Weapon of War: Sexual Violence and Its Consequences (July 2004)

Amnesty International documents human rights violations, including rape, abduction, and sexual slavery, that target the women of Darfur. The report demonstrates that the Janjawid militias rape women as part of a systematic campaign to drive black Africans from the region.

Darfur in Flames: Atrocities in Western Sudan (April 2004)

This Human Rights Watch report details the atrocities in Darfur committed against African tribes by the "Janjaweed Militia," which allegedly is sponsored by the Sudanese government. It also assesses the spillover effect on neighboring Chad and the humanitarian implications for the Darfur population.

Darfur Rising: Sudan's New Crisis (March 25, 2004)

This International Crisis Group report denounces the Sudanese government for manipulating the ongoing peace talks with the southern rebel SPLA. The government foot-dragging evidently seek to prolong the atrocities in Darfur, and to keep the international community out of the region.


2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 2001 | 1998-2000


Sudan 'Accepts' UN Darfur Package (December 27, 2006)

In a letter to the UN Secretary General, Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir agreed to start implementing UN plans to strengthen the African Union mission in Darfur. Khartoum has been opposed to large-scale deployment of UN troops. The letter leaves unresolved the size and command of the hybrid force. (al-Jazeera)

The Political Dynamics of the Darfur Crisis (December 21, 2006)

In the name of African solidarity, African nations have been reluctant to criticize the Sudanese government. But even the African Union now seems to have lost patience with Khartoum's refusal to improve the situation. In December 2006, the AU Joint Ceasefire Commission decided that AMIS should start disarming the Janjaweed immediately and called on Khartoum to stop supporting the militia or face "consequences." The AU, the international community and the UN have reached an "informal" consensus to put further pressure on Sudan. This Pambazuka article reviews the proposals drawn up, including imposing targeted multilateral sanctions against leaders responsible for the violence, suggesting that the International Criminal Court hold to account those responsible for crimes against humanity and that an African Union peacekeeping force should be backed up by UN support for logistical efficiency.

Darfur's Violence Spreads Across Borders (December 2, 2006)

While violence intensifies in Darfur and crosses over the border to Chad and the Central African Republic, this Mail&Guardian article warns conflict could widen into a regional crisis. Not only do these three African countries face internal violence, but conflict moving beyond their national boundaries provokes refugee displacement between the states. Yet, Sudan continues to resist any UN involvement in a peacekeeping operation in the region.

‘I Will Not Sign' (November 30, 2006)

In this London Review Bookshop piece, Alex de Waal qualifies as a "delusion" the belief that peacekeeping troops could bring peace in Darfur. Because it is a political crisis, the conflict in Darfur needs a political settlement the author argues. Looking back to previous peace efforts, the author deplores the international failure to include all Sudanese actors and rebel factions in the past peace negotiations, which led to an "unworkable ceasefire agreement." To end the crisis, de Waal suggests demilitarizing Darfur and reducing poverty to address the causes which led to rebel actions in the first place.

Government ‘Accepts' UN Troops in Darfur (November 17, 2006)

The Sudanese government has agreed on the ‘principle' of a hybrid peacekeeping mission in Darfur composed of UN and African Union peacekeepers. According to the agreed solution, the African Union would have a predominant role while the UN would provide the under-funded African force with logistical support. Despite this first encouraging step, disagreement remains on issues such as the size of the force. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

UN Not Given Up on Darfur Force Plan-Annan (November 15, 2006)

Even though the government of Sudan opposes a large UN peacekeeping mission on its soil, the UN continues to explore options to bring peace in Darfur, including by strengthening the African Union peacekeeping troops. In a context of mounting regional instability, with Chad having declared a state of emergency, Secretary General Kofi Annan raised the possibility of putting UN observers or some sort of international presence along the border of Chad and Sudan to ensure the protection of refugees and reduce violence. (Reuters)

War in Sudan? Not Where the Oil Wealth Flows (October 24, 2006)

Thanks to oil exports and Asian foreign investments, Khartoum enjoys a new economic prosperity. Yet, the one million square mile country draws much more attention from the conflict currently occurring in Darfur. This New York Times piece points out that western trade embargo on Sudanese exports resulting from Sudan's human rights record in the 90s lacked effectiveness as Sudan's Asian and Middle Eastern trading partners provide Khartoum with an important source of wealth.

Sudan Expels UN Envoy Over Darfur Military Losses (October 23, 2006)

Following comments made by the outspoken UN Special Envoy in Sudan, Jan Pronk, on his personal website, Khartoum expelled thim from Sudan. Pronk reported on the Sudanese army offensives in North Darfur and warned on the possibility of a confrontation between Sudan and Chad. In New York, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan decided to maintain Pronk's position as Special Envoy in Sudan. (Independent)

Sanctions Would Force Govt to Allow UN Troops in Darfur (October 12, 2006)

Pointing to the conclusions of a UN report on the failure of the arms embargo on Sudan, NGOs advocate for urgent UN action to solve the conflict in Darfur. While Amnesty International urges the Sudanese government to accept peacekeeping forces in Darfur, the International Crisis Group calls for targeted sanctions against Sudan. Yet Khartoum refuses UN intervention and the Security Council remains undecided whether to intervene without the Sudanese authorities' consent. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

Oil Disputes Raise Tension among Southern Sudan Factions (September 26, 2006)

This World Politics Watch article warns that oil and ethnicity clashes may threaten another surge in the Sudanese conflict. "Unequal distribution of oil revenues, bungled oil contracts, and differences in ethnic power sharing" create new grounds for conflict in the already divided country. The government of south Sudan, in particular, accuses Khartoum of not channeling oil revenue to the regional communities and blames foreign companies of exploring illegitimately oil resources, further increasing tensions among Sudanese factions.

Decision for Darfur Peacekeepers (September 20, 2006)

As US President George Bush's call for UN involvement in Darfur was "totally rejected" by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, a BBC specialist suggested that the real question is "not so much whether the force is a UN one or an AU one, but whether the AU can operate with a tougher mandate allowing them to shoot if things get tough" like its UN peacekeeping counterpart. A strong AU mission, well-funded and equipped would end the diplomatic impasse.

Strongly Condemning Escalation of Violence in Sudan, Secretary-General Tells Security Council ‘It Is Time to Act' (September 11, 2006)

Kofi Annan urged the Security Council to take effective actions towards the establishment of peace in Darfur. He calls the Council members to "use all their means to convince Khartoum that UN blue helmets should take over the work of the existing African Union (AU) force." The crisis in Darfur is "a crucial test for the Council's authority and effectiveness", the Secretary General affirmed. (UN News)

The AU and the Sudanese Government (September 7, 2006)

The government of Sudan has refused the extension of the African Union's (AU) mandate after September and rejected the UN resolution seeking the deployment of a UN force in Darfur. According to this Pambazuka article, the Sudanese government has acted in bad faith and has persistently hampered UN and AU efforts in Sudan. The author suggests that the AU should strengthen its capacity for peacekeeping operations in the region in order to overcome the misconception that "Africans cannot resolve their problems themselves."

UN Votes to Create Darfur Force (August 31, 2006)

The UN Security Council has voted to create a peacekeeping force for Darfur, overcoming Russian and Chinese opposition by agreeing not to deploy the troops until Khartoum drops its strong opposition. If implemented, the force will overtake the UN mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo as the largest UN peacekeeping operation. The move follows the warning by UN Assistant Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations Hedi Annabi of a "fresh humanitarian disaster threatening massive loss of life." (Reuters)

To Halt Sudan's Atrocities, Follow the Money (August 22, 2006)

This International Herald Tribune article argues that Khartoum will only stop its atrocities, disarm the Janjaweed militias and fulfill its obligations under the Darfur peace agreement with the imposition of tough, targeted sanctions. Arguing that appeals to Khartoum's conscience will always fail, the authors highlight the secret economic network that funds the regime as the best target for international pressure. Only a threat to its key assets will force Sudan's highly pragmatic government to relent.

UN Official Warns of Major New Sudanese Offensive in Darfur (August 18, 2006)

UN Assistant Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations Hedi Annabi has warned the Security Council that the people of Darfur face reliving "the horrors of late 2003 and early 2004" with hundreds of thousands of lives at risk. Khartoum plans a major offensive in the troubled Darfur region, violating the tenuous peace agreement signed in May 2006. Annabi painted a very bleak picture of the situation in west Sudan, highlighting the "hundreds of deaths" and "horrendous sexual and gender based violence" since the accord was signed. He told the Security Council that the "unprecedented level of deadly attacks" may force aid workers to withdraw. (Washington Post)

Human Rights Watch Urges UN to Impose Sanctions on Sudan's Leaders (August 15, 2006)

Human Rights Watch calls on the UN Security Council to impose "personal, targeted sanctions" on Sudanese leaders for impeding efforts at the deployment of a UN peacekeeping force in Darfur. While some in Khartoum support UN troops in Darfur, President Omar El Bashir remains staunchly opposed, promising to personally lead resistance to any "occupiers." In this letter to the Security Council, Human Rights Watch strongly argues for the authorization of a large UN force with full powers under Chapter VII of the UN Charter to use "all necessary means" to protect civilians.

Annan Sees Up to 24,000 UN Peacekeepers for Darfur (July 31, 2006)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has proposed to the Security Council a large and highly mobile peacekeeping force for Darfur that would overtake the UN force in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as the largest UN peacekeeping mission. Annan recommends deployment of up to 24, 000 troops and international police officers divided into a variety of different units to meet the many security needs in the troubled province. However, his complex plan will require considerable logistical support. A lack of promised resources has hindered the African Union Mission in Sudan, and Khartoum remains fiercely opposed to a UN force in Darfur. (Reuters)

Darfur and History (July 10, 2006)

As some advocates press for US humanitarian intervention to end the suffering in Darfur, Nii Akuetteh suggests that strategic interests lie behind Washington's concern over the situation in western Sudan. He warns that former US President Reagan's intervention in neighboring Chad holds important lessons for today that ought not to be ignored. (This is an extract from an article that originally appeared in TomPaine)

A Dying Deal in Darfur (July 13, 2006)

Sudan's refusal to disarm the Janjaweed militias leaves many of the 2.5 million displaced Darfurians strongly opposed to their own peace process. While they greatly desire an end to the violence and the chance to return home, the refugees remain fearful of provisions in the Abuja agreement that would leave them vulnerable to Janjaweed attacks. The success of the peace deal depends on Janjaweed disarmament, but the Sudanese government has given no sign that it will end its support to the militias. Khartoum has taken the temperature of the UN, US and Europe and believes the impunity can continue without fear of repercussions. (Boston Globe)

UN Wants to Go to Darfur Now to Help African Union (June 28, 2006)

As Khartoum maintains its opposition to a UN force in Darfur, UN Undersecretary General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Marie Guehenno called for the UN to augment the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS) peacekeepers to create a potential foothold for the UN in the region. While UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, the Security Council and the AU keep up the pressure on the Sudanese government, Guehenno argues that UN support for the AMIS now will make deployment of UN forces much easier should Khartoum's position change. (Reuters)

Sudan's Leader Rules Out UN Peacekeepers in Darfur (June 20, 2006)

In a blow to the UN Security Council's hopes of deploying UN peacekeepers in Darfur, Sudan's president vowed never to allow UN peacekeepers into Sudan and promised he would lead the "resistance" against any foreign force. President Omar al-Bashir characterized a potential UN mission as a "colonial force" in his strongest rejection yet of the UN intervention plan in Darfur. He called for the UN to instead bolster the African Union peacekeepers currently in Darfur. (Houston Chronicle)

UN Security Council Report on its Recent Visit to Sudan (June 17, 2006)

British Ambassador to the United Nations Emyr Jones Parry has submitted to the Security Council a report on the Security Council mission to Sudan he headed. The mission found that the invocation of Chapter VII of the UN Charter to start the process of creating a UN force for Sudan was a "major irritant" for Khartoum. While Chapter VII allows for the use of force to restore international peace and security, the mission explained it was invoked for the technical reasons of allowing a UN force to protect itself, and was not a political statement. Parry expresses a guarded optimism that Sudan will eventually allow the deployment of a UN force. (Sudan Tribune)

Sudan and Darfur: The Problem Is Political (June 10, 2006)

This interview with a leader of the Sudanese Communist Party offers an alternative view of the problems facing Sudan and the Darfur region and what it will take to solve them. Fathi M. El Fadl argues that Sudan's troubles are political in nature and "cannot be dealt with as a secondary byproduct of the settlement of the civil war in the South, as the US and other governments think." Solving the crisis in Sudan will require "peace, unity, democracy and balanced development that can only be achieved through the active participation of political parties, representatives of the regions, including those carrying arms, and civil society organizations." (People's Weekly World)

'Jihad' Threatened if UN Force Comes to Darfur (June 9, 2006)

The UN Security Council delegation to Sudan met with strong local opposition to UN peacekeepers replacing the African Union mission in Sudan (AMIS). While the government in Khartoum has long opposed UN intervention, a Sudanese tribal chief declared that the arrival of UN peacekeepers would amount to "foreign occupation." Echoing a call from Osama Bin Laden, he promised a "jihad" against any UN peacekeepers sent to Darfur. (CNN)

UN Peacekeepers Heading to Darfur, Group Agrees (June 7, 2006)

The Security Council and the African Union have agreed that UN peacekeepers should take over from the AU force in Darfur (AMIS) once Sudan's government grants permission. Both the UN and the AU are hopeful that Khartoum will allow the UN to enter despite the government's long opposition to UN intervention. The AU is increasing its peacekeeping forces in the interim period and is hoping on NATO to fulfill a new promise of providing helicopters and other logistical support. However AU forces will still be spread very thinly and western countries have failed to live up to earlier promises of support. (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)

Fear and Mistrust as People of Darfur Turn against Peacekeepers (June 7, 2006)

Lack of resources continues to cripple the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS), in need of more troops, transportation, translators and manpower to effectively carry out its duties. This hampers the peacekeepers' ability to respond to the needs of the people of Darfur, causing distrust and even resentment among the people they are trying to help. In a mission to Sudan, the Security Council tries to persuade Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir to allow the integration of AMIS into a larger and more robust UN force. A joint AU-UN assessment mission will follow to evaluate the needs for the transition. (Guardian)

Strategic Victimhood in Sudan (May 31, 2006)

This New York Times opinion piece takes an alternative view of the situation in Sudan, warning that calls for military intervention could prolong the conflict in Darfur. The author accuses the rebel groups that have yet to sign the peace accord of continuing the conflict to provoke Khartoum into retaliation that will again incur the wrath of the rest of the world, further weakening the government's position in any future negotiations. To prevent international concern being abused in this manner, the author advises that the US should eschew romantic notions of freedom fighters in Darfur and that Washington should announce a policy of non-intervention on behalf of provocative rebels.

Security Council Votes to Accelerate Darfur Deployment (May 17, 2006)

The Security Council voted unanimously to speed up the deployment of a UN force to replace the African Union peacekeeping mission (AMIS) in Darfur. Permission has been sought from Khartoum for a joint UN-AU assessment team to visit the region to advise the Security Council on what is required of a UN peacekeeping force. While China, Russia and Qatar dropped their opposition to the plan after the AU expressed strong support for it, Sudan has been consistent in its opposition to a UN force in Darfur and some rebel groups have yet to sign the ceasefire agreement. (Seattle Times)

AU Warns Darfur Rebels of Sanctions (May 15, 2006)

Aiming to build upon the peace agreement signed between the Sudanese government and the main rebel faction of the Sudan Liberation Army, the African Union (AU) has given two Darfur rebel groups that have yet to sign the accord a 24 hour deadline to do so and again urged Khartoum to allow UN peacekeepers to replace the current AU mission in Sudan (AMIS). However the rebels have not yet given their response and the Sudanese government has repeated its opposition to a UN force. ( Agence France Presse)

Sudan Open to Deployment of UN Troops (May 7, 2006)

Following two years of sporadic negotiations, the Sudanese government and the main rebel faction of the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) signed a peace agreement seeking to disarm the pro-government Janjaweed militia and incorporate rebel fighters into Sudan's armed forces. The accord raises hope that Khartoum will allow a UN force to enter Darfur to help African Union troops. However, experts remain skeptical about the viability of the text given that both sides have a history of failing to honor agreements. (Associated Press)

What Imperialists Don't Say: Oil Is Behind Struggle in Darfur (April 27, 2006)

Many experts accuse veto-wielding China of blocking Security Council action against the Khartoum government to protect Beijing's oil investments in Sudan. This article points out that the US, France, and UK also have oil interests in Sudan, especially in Darfur's untapped oil reserves, which represent a vast amount of potential wealth at a time when the price of crude oil has skyrocketed. The author questions the "imperialists'" motives for pushing to replace the African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur with 20,000 UN troops. (Workers World)

Darfur Clamped in Bitter Sudan-Chad Row (April 18, 2006)

Chad announced it was breaking off its diplomatic relations with Sudan and withdrawing from the Abuja peace talks following what Chadian President Idriss Déby described as a "failed coup attempt" engineered by Sudanese-backed Chadian rebels against his government. While some African diplomats doubt that the mediations can continue without this "key broker," others argue that the peace talks could survive Chad's boycott. Meanwhile, the breakdown in relations between Khartoum and neighboring Chad has exposed Darfur to more violence and suffering. (Sudan Tribune)

Russia, China Block Sudan Sanctions (April 17, 2006)

China, Russia and Qatar used their position on a UN sanctions committee to block Britain's efforts to sanction four individuals - one Sudanese government official, one pro-government militia member, and two rebel leaders - suspected of war crimes in Darfur. China's UN Ambassador Wang Guangya explained that a sanctions vote would only harm the Abuja peace talks. The US, which backed the British initiative, reacted by threatening to push the Security Council to a vote that would force Russia and China into casting a formal veto. (Reuters)

Global Arms Trade: Africa and the Curse of the AK-47 (April 6, 2006)

While UN diplomats discuss the possibility of adopting a global arms-trade treaty, Mandari warriors, a tribe of nomadic cattle herders in southern Sudan, share with the Independent how AK-47 guns – the remains of a 23-year civil war - have affected their lives and culture. From child abduction by gun-toting rivals to a new and unfamiliar lack of respect for human life, guns are perceived as a necessary but corrosive evil. As a Mandari leader puts it, "All the rules that once applied have been rewritten."

A Replay of Iraq Beckons in Darfur if We Send in Troops (April 6, 2006)

The Bush administration plans to send several hundred NATO advisers to Darfur to support African Union (AU) peacekeeping troops until the transition to a UN force is completed. But Dr. Paul Moorcraft writes in this Guardian commentary that a deployment of NATO or UN peacekeepers - mainly comprised of "white, western, Christian men" - in Darfur could unite all those fighting each other in a holy war against outsiders. Moorcraft urges the UN and the US to put the same sort of international political effort invested in the January 2005 north-south peace agreement into the Abuja peace talks.

UN Envoy Criticizes Security Council and Khartoum (April 6, 2006)

UN Special Representative in Sudan Jan Pronk accused the Security Council of not putting enough pressure on the Sudanese government to commit to the peace process and cooperate with the UN. As a result, Pronk explains, "the threat emanating from the Security Council is gradually becoming a joke." Pronk's criticism also extended to Washington, calling the US plan to deploy a NATO peacekeeping force in Darfur "extremely foolish" and "a misbegotten idea" that will only infuriate Muslims because of the association with events in Afghanistan and Iraq. (Radio Netherlands)

UN Council Chides Sudan's Decision to Bar UN Official (April 5, 2006)

The government of Sudan blocked UN Humanitarian Affairs chief Jan Egeland from visiting Khartoum and Darfur and refused to allow him to fly over Darfur on his way to Chad. The Sudanese government claims the incident is a misunderstanding, but Egeland believes the sudden reversal by Khartoum was intended to prevent him from observing the deteriorating conditions in the region. The US had hoped the Security Council would adopt a tough presidential statement condemning Khartoum's move, but Russia, China and Qatar opposed, and instead the Council adopted a more general statement focusing on the humanitarian situation in Darfur. (Sudan Tribune)

If not Peace, then Justice (April 2, 2005)

This New York Times piece provides detailed insight into the genocide in Darfur and the efforts of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in bringing perpetrators to justice. The ICC faces many challenges including opposition from the Sudanese government and difficulty in gathering physical evidence. Government backed "Janjaweed" militias' raids continue, leaving African Union troops "nearly powerless" and only able to monitor cease-fire rather than conduct peacekeeping. Large anti-UN protests in Khartoum demonstrate the stark lack of domestic support for UN operations and the author argues Security Council members such as China, France and Russia remain uncommitted to Darfur.

Africans Unsure on UN Fielding Darfur Force (February 28, 2006)

UN Special Representative in Sudan Jan Pronk fears that the African Union may reconsider handing over its peacekeeping mission in Darfur to UN command after heavy lobbying by the Sudanese government. Khartoum has expressed strong opposition to a UN transition, portraying a UN entry as a precursor to a Western takeover of the country. Pronk feels that the Sudanese leaders manipulate this feeling to get support from the Arab and Islamic world. So far, China, a purchaser of Sudan's oil; Qatar, the Security Council's Arab representative; and Russia have opposed possible Security Council action or sanctions against Sudan. (Reuters)

Why Is the US Again Hard On Sudan? (February 23, 2006)

Following a discussion with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, President George Bush agreed to support and lobby for an increase of peacekeeping forces in Darfur. Analysts see two main reasons behind Washington's sudden shift in attitude towards Darfur: Sudan's oil and geopolitical position. Indeed, Darfur's location represents an entrance into the Arab world for the US to "prevent Arab countries from turning into a terrorist haven or a hotbed of terrorist activities." (People's Daily)

The Test (February 17, 2006)

A UN panel of experts identified in a confidential report 17 individuals who could be considered for sanctions by the UN Security Council over their alleged role in the Darfur conflict. Among the prominent names mentioned are Sudan's interior minister, defense minister, and the director of national intelligence service. According to US officials and analysts in Washington, sanctions against the Sudanese officials could put the US in a difficult position given its close intelligence relationship with Sudan in the "war on terror." (American Prospect)

Desperation in Darfur (February 12, 2006)

Can the UN succeed in Darfur where the African Union (AU) peacekeepers have failed? The UN, which has begun the months-long process of taking over the AU mission hopes that a stronger peacekeeping operation - requiring as many as 20,000 peacekeepers - will help "stop the carnage." But according to a Sudanese police commander, without a viable political deal "no one will give up his weapon." (US News & World Report)

US, Britain Move to Get UN Troops into Darfur (February 1, 2006)

The US and Britain are working on a draft resolution outlining plans to deploy a UN peacekeeping force to replace the African Union mission in Darfur. The US hopes to use its presidency of the Security Council to push the member states to take a decision on the nature and size of the peacekeeping mission, as well as on the technical aspects of the transition and implementation process, by the end of February 2006. (Reuters)

Darfur Descending (January 25, 2006)

In this Washington Post opinion piece, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan urges the Security Council to adopt a resolution allowing UN troops to replace the African Union (AU) mission in Darfur. Annan stresses that the new mission must be larger and better equipped than the current AU force, with a much stronger and clearer mandate. The Secretary General hopes to raise money and support for the new UN mission at a February 20, 2006 donor conference. "Those countries that have the required military assets must be ready to deploy them."

From Rwanda to Darfur: Lessons Learned? (January 12, 2006)

Has the international community learned from the 1994 Rwandan genocide or will history repeat itself in Darfur? UN Secretary General Kofi Annan warned in 2004 that "the world must not permit Darfur to turn into another Rwanda." Gerald Caplan writes in this Pambazuka article that the international community's meager response to the Darfur crisis shows how global powers will not respond to calls for forceful intervention based strictly on humanitarian grounds. In fact, Caplan argues, "some countries are capable of almost infinite callousness and indifference to human suffering if geopolitical or political interests are not at stake."

UN Panel Recommends Sanctions against Sudanese Officials (January 10, 2006)

The report of a UN panel of experts suggests the Security Council should impose sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, on specific individuals involved in the conflict in Darfur. The report also accuses the Sudanese government, the Sudanese Liberation Army and other rebel groups of human rights violations. It is unclear when the Security Council will discuss the report, since Qatar, the only Arab member of the Security Council, and China, who has imporatant oil interests in Sudan, blocked its presentation to the Council. (Associated Press)

Chad President Wants Darfur Put under UN Mandate (January 4, 2006)

Chad's President Idriss Deby accused Sudan of supporting Chadian rebels who vow to overthrow him. Deby asked the Security Council to put Darfur on the Security Council agenda to prevent the violence from spreading. Experts fear that mounting tensions along the Chad-Sudan border could destabilize the entire Sub-Saharan region. (Reuters)


Source: AFP/Steve Forrest

China's Interests in Sudan Bring Diplomatic Cover (December 17, 2005)

Though condemned by the UN for its human rights abuses in Darfur, the Sudanese government has avoided Security Council sanctions. According to human rights experts, the main impediment to stronger action by the Security Council has been China's trade and oil interests in Sudan. China, which owns 40 percent of Sudan's main oil producing field, has used the threat of veto to soften resolutions and avoid offending Khartoum. (Reuters)

Dead End in Darfur? (December 12, 2005)

African Union-sponsored talks have failed to broker a peace agreement between the antigovernment Sudanese Liberation Army and the government-supported Janjaweed militias. In an effort to stop a humanitarian crisis in Darfur, should UN peacekeepers replace African Union (AU) forces? Or should AU peacekeepers use military action to disarm the rebels? While experts argue that the UN is not a cure-all for Darfur's problems, Sudanese President Umar al-Bashir says that any foreign military intervention is out of the question: "The solution to the problem lies with the people of Darfur themselves." (Weekly Standard)

UN Contemplates Military Operation for Darfur (December 4, 2005)

Experts from the African Union (AU), the US, the EU, and the UN are discussing the possibility of integrating the AU peacekeeping mission in Darfur into the UN mission in Southern Sudan (UNMIS). UN officials wonder if such a plan is feasible, given the fact that the US has reduced its contribution to the AU's budget by $50 million. Plus, it is unlikely the AU will agree to combine its own operation with the UN force as it would symbolize the mission's failure to provide security in Darfur. (Reuters)

Sudan at the Head of a Global Sweep to Mop up World's Oil Resources (November 9, 2005)

China has won a new ally in its quest for oil: Sudan. Chinese firms are intensively investing in the oil-rich country. This business alliance is expected to bring Sudan more than $1 billion in oil revenues in 2005. But human rights campaigners warn that this Chinese oil bid undermines efforts to hold Khartoum accountable for its terrible rights record in Darfur. (Guardian)

Situation in Darfur Seriously Degenerating, Says Guterres (October 24, 2005)

UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres warned that the situation in Darfur is spiraling downward. Guterres expressed deep concern that the increase in attacks on refugee camps and aid workers could exacerbate conflicts in neighboring countries such as Chad, Eritrea and Ethiopia.

Why Wait on Darfur? (October 24, 2005)

The president of the World Peace Foundation writes in the Boston Globe that China and Russia's oil interests in Sudan is what prevents the UN and the AU from restraining the janjaweed rebels and negotiating sensibly with Khartoum. The author argues that given that the UN has acknowledged the ''responsibility to protect" innocent civilians within sovereign countries and within war zones, much more can and should be done to save lives. "Darfur is the place to begin showing that the world cares."

AU to Refer Darfur Situation to UN Security Council (October 11, 2005)

The African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council decided to refer Darfur to the Security Council after AU peacekeepers were kidnapped and killed in an armed attack between rebels and government-backed militias. The AU special representative to Darfur expressed deep concern about the deteriorating security situation in Western Sudan, and asked the Sudanese government to allow the delivery of 105 armored personnel carriers for protecting the peacekeepers. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

US Blocks UN Briefing on Atrocities in Sudan (October 10, 2005)

US Ambassador John Bolton, along with China, Algeria and Russia, prevented the Secretary-General's Special Adviser for the prevention of genocide from briefing the Security Council on the situation in Darfur. Bolton objected to the briefing to make the point that the Council should act against the deteriorating security situation in Darfur rather than just discuss it. Council diplomats who wanted to hear the briefing noted that Bolton had lined up with the three Council members that have watered down action against Khartoum. (Reuters)

Unifying Darfur's Rebels: A Prerequisite for Peace (October 6, 2005)

The International Crisis Group warns that as long as the rebel opposition groups remain fragmented, the conflict in Darfur will go on indefinitely and civilians will continue to pay the cost. Darfur's rebels, who are waging a campaign for greater autonomy of their western region, clash on how African Union-sponsored negotiations should be conducted. This, in turn, makes them "vulnerable to manipulation by the Sudanese government, Libya and Chad."

Fresh Darfur Attacks: Sign of a Peace Deal? (October 3, 2005)

According to Richard Cornwell of the Institute for Security Studies in South Africa, the surge of violence in Darfur could hint at new positive dynamics in the region. Cornwell argues that Darfur's rebel groups are using violence to show their willingness to negotiate with the African Union (AU). "It is thump and talk, thump and talk – that is the way you flex your muscles at peace talks." (Christian Science Monitor)

Insecurity May Stop Humanitarian Aid to Darfur at Any Time (October 2, 2005)

After the Sudan Liberation Army's unprecedented attack on an undefended camp for Internally Displaced Persons in Darfur, UN Chief of Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland warned that the UN peacekeeping mission in Southern Sudan (UNMIS) may not be able to sustain its operations under escalating insecurity. Nicki Bennett, an Oxfam humanitarian worker based in Southern Darfur, warns that if humanitarian personnel are forced to withdraw on an emergency basis, there will be devastating consequences for the 3.5 million Darfurians affected by the conflict. (Sudan Tribune)

Sudan, Rebels Should Get Ultimatum in Darfur (September 21, 2005)

Jan Pronk, the special envoy of the Secretary General in Sudan, urged the Security Council to "give the Sudanese government and rebels in Darfur an ultimatum to compel them to clinch a peace deal" by the end of 2005. Otherwise he suggested that the Security Council consider hardening its position and cut off the financing of the fighters, allegedly armed by the Sudan military. "The longer a situation like this lasts, the more difficult it is to change it anymore." (Reuters)

The Failure of the African Union in Darfur: Much too Little, Much too Late (September 7, 2005)

This article draws attention to the rapidly deteriorating security situation in Darfur. The author claims that over the past fourteen months of deployment, the African Union (AU) "failed to demonstrate either the military capacity or the political will necessary to protect Darfur's acutely vulnerable civilian populations and critical humanitarian operations." He blames the continuing violence in Darfur on Europe, the US, Canada and the UN, who abandoned the AU as the sole guarantor for the security of the country. (Sudan Tribune)

In Sudan, the Pull of Peace and Oil (September 4, 2005)

Since the Sudanese government and the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) signed the Naivasha peace protocols in January 2005, more than 2,000 refugees have returned to southern Sudan hoping to find employment. They see the oil in the region as the best chance for prosperity. However, the head of UN operations in southern Sudan, David Gressly, remains cautious: "The opportunities here are tremendous. But so are some of the risks." (Washington Post)

War of the Future (August 18, 2005)

The North-South and Darfur crises in Sudan stem from oil conflict, yet the US and European media largely ignore this "invisible war," says author David Morse. Writing in TomDispatch, Morse points to the Bush administration's "schizophrenic stance" — namely the labeling of the situation as genocide and then quietly lobbying against international action — as one example of how Sudan and other African countries fall victim to the developed world's greed for oil.

Sudan: Interview with UN Special Representative Jan Pronk (August 4, 2005)

In an interview with Integrated Regional Information Networks, UN Special Representative in Sudan Jan Pronk assesses the situation on the ground in Darfur. Discussing the Janjawid's continued "ethnic cleansing policy" and the Sudanese government's unwillingness to disarm militias, Pronk calls for more African Union troops to keep the peace. But peace is not the only concern: humanitarian assistance, communication and security are also integrated into what he calls a "comprehensive problem, a comprehensive conflict, [that…] needs a comprehensive approach."

Sudan Needs Aid to Keep Peace: Annan (July 10, 2005)

Top UN envoy in Sudan Jan Pronk says donors must follow through on the $4.5 billion pledged for Sudan aid. The UN has received only $650 million thus far, and Pronk notes that $2 billion will be needed just for 2005. The news comes as the African Union, which spearheads peacekeeping efforts in the country, also faces shortfalls of nearly $200 million. (Reuters)

The AU's Mission in Darfur: Bridging the Gaps (July 6, 2005)

"The Sudanese government has consistently failed to protect civilians in Darfur, and the [African Union] alone cannot fulfill the international responsibility to do so," warns the International Crisis Group. Arguing against "African solutions for African problems," this report explains that the AU needs a stronger mandate and more troops to adequately protect Sudanese civilians.

Darfur Talks Adjourn until August after Sides Agree on Some Basics (July 6, 2005)

After nearly four weeks of discussions in a fifth round of peace talks, the Sudanese government and Darfur rebels signed a "broad declaration of principles" that leaves details of the peace process to a later meeting in August 2005. The agreement contained conditions for wealth distribution, security measures and the return of refugees and internally displaced persons. Although delegates expressed optimism at the outcome, some rebel factions cautioned that fighters on the ground may not respect the agreement. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

UN Council Delays Sudan Sanctions by Three Months (July 5, 2005)

Security Council Resolution 1591 of March 2005 demanded sanctions on human rights violators in Sudan's Darfur region, yet it took over three months for the UN to announce the panel of experts who will identify individuals responsible for the violations. UN officials attributed delays to experts who turned down the offer and to China, which objected to one British candidate for "being too critical of Sudan." (Reuters)

Oil Discovery Adds New Twist in Darfur Tragedy (June 15, 2005)

The discovery of "abundant" oil-fields in Darfur suggests that the Sudanese government engages in the ongoing conflict in a self-serving ploy to gain control of the oil-rich land. However, some critics argue more optimistically that the potential oil profits may "speed up peace talks" between the rebel groups and Khartoum. Commentators explain Washington's serious push for peace in Darfur and the lack of stronger Security Council sanctions by economic interests sparked by the oil finding. (AlertNet)

Briton Named as Buyer of Darfur Oil Rights (June 10, 2005)

British millionaire Friedhelm Eronat's "purchase of oil rights" in Darfur illustrates that "the scramble for Africa" continues: Britain "is serving as a base for questionable transactions" and speculations soar that Mr Eronat may also be acting for China. Meanwhile, human rights activists express outrage that wealthy corporations pay the Sudanese military regime: as a representative of the Darfur rebels indicates, the oil exploration fuels the conflict by financing "the ruling elite." (Guardian)

On Patrol with the AU Troops in Darfur (June 8, 2005)

African Union (AU) peacekeepers begin "winning international acclaim" for their maintenance of a "shaky ceasefire" in Darfur. "Although the peacekeepers are stretched beyond their limited capacity," violence has reduced in areas patrolled by the AU. Since international efforts raised $466 million to assist the AU in Sudan, troops and civilian police will be able to triple their numbers to 7, 700. With the AU "the only governing body to put troops on the ground in Darfur," the international community's support remains necessary. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

UN: Sanctions For Darfur Stalled in Committee (June 2, 2005)

The UN Security Council has failed to appoint a panel of experts to "identify individuals responsible for violence" in Darfur – a committee comprising all Council members was required to establish the panel within 30 days of Resolution 1591 of March 29, 2005. Human Rights Watch notes that the UN sanctions on Sudanese perpetrators of violence can only "have teeth if implemented" and questions why the Council "is lagging behind in its work."

Intelligence Brief: Sudan (May 26, 2005)

After calling the situation in Darfur a "genocide," a legal trigger for military intervention, the US has agreed to a more multilateral approach. The article cites "Khartoum's cooperation with Washington's ‘war on terrorism'" as the main reason for the Bush administration's shift of attitude. According to the Power and Interest News Report, this development opens the door to other states and international organizations to assist in the Sudan crisis. Will these multilateral organizations pursue a bold new approach, and will any new tactics prove successful?

AU Says to Seek $460 Mln for Expanded Darfur Force (May 25, 2005)

The African Union (AU) will ask for international funding at a donor pledging conference on Sudan to increase its peacekeeping force in Darfur. The AU has deployed a mission of about 2,300 troops to monitor the ceasefire, but seeks to increase its force to 7,700 by July and 12,000 by September 2005. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan will co-chair the conference with AU Commission President Alpha Oumar Konare, showing UN support for the AU mission. (Reuters)

Ring Them Bells (May 2005)

This article draws attention to Washington's oil interests in Sudan and the motives of proponents of a US intervention. President George Bush's close ties with Sudan's intelligence chief Salah Abdallah Gosh expose US hypocrisy over what the Bush administration has labeled genocide in Darfur. Although Gosh's own government has accused him of directing attacks against civilians, Bush has forged close ties with him in the "fight against terrorism." Gosh, described as "Osama's designated minder in the 1990's" could become a useful US ally, enabling Washington to chase oil profits in the name of humanitarian intervention. (Moscow Times)

Darfur Rebels Say Ready to Resume Peace Talks (May 13, 2005)

Darfur's two main rebel groups, the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), have announced they will resume peace talks "under the auspices of the African Union without preconditions." In March 2005 the SLA and the JEM said they would not return to negotiations until the international community sent war crimes suspects to an international court. Briefing the Security Council, UN Assistant Secretary General for Peacekeeping Hedi Annabi stressed that "lasting peace in Darfur will only come through a negotiated settlement." (AlertNet)

Sudan's Unbowed, Unbroken Inner Circle (May 3, 2005)

This Washington Post article outlines Omar Hassan Bashir and Ali Uthman Muhammad Taha's rise to the top of Sudanese politics, and highlights tactics the current president and vice president employ to tighten their grip over the war-torn country. An oil deal with China generated $500 million a year to finance a war with the southern Sudanese rebels, but faced with wide international criticism, Taha and Bashir eventually abandoned their vision of an Islamic state in favor of "survival politics." A pragmatic approach to politics has enabled the Bashir-Taha team to appease the international community just enough to stay in power "while crushing political dissent at home."

Constitution Talks Begin (May 2, 2005)

As foreseen in the North-South peace agreement, a commission has started work on Sudan's interim constitution, which will pave the way for a new government of national unity. The Sudanese government and former rebel movement Sudan People's Liberation Army have retained 63 percent of the seats on the commission. The major opposition Umma Party has refused to join the process and demands more seats for opposition parties, endangering the credibility of the constitution. (Aljazeera)

AU Agrees to Enlarge Darfur Force (April 29, 2005)

African Union (AU) Spokesman Aasane Ba has announced that the organization will more than double its troops in Darfur to 7,700 by the end of September 2005. An AU report also recommends broadening the mission's mandate by allowing troops to intervene to protect civilians from violence. Sudanese officials have objected to such a measure, arguing that the AU "risks being seen by the Sudanese as an occupying force." UN envoy to Sudan Jan Pronk commented that Darfur needs a 12,000-strong peacekeeping force by early 2005. (Aljazeera)

A New Sudan Action Plan (April 26, 2005)

The International Crisis Group (ICG) stresses that despite a peace agreement, Sudan remains at war and as many as 10,000 civilians a month are dying in Darfur. ICG calls on international organizations and concerned governments to coordinate to protect civilians and relief supplies in Darfur. A stronger African Union (AU) mandate and force could help relieve the suffering, and a high level meeting between EU, UN, NATO and AU representatives could pave the way for a Darfur peace process. In addition, ICG emphasizes the need for a rapid deployment of UN forces to Sudan to implement the Comprehensive North-South Peace Agreement.

EU Seeks Support for UN Resolution against Sudan (April 21, 2005)

In hopes of securing a two-thirds majority in favor of their proposal, Europeans have delayed a vote of the UN Human Rights Commission on a resolution condemning the Sudanese government for violence against civilians. The European draft points directly at the Sudanese government and states Khartoum's actions "may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity." An alternative African draft accuses "all parties." With 14 African countries in the 53-nation Commission, the European proposal will unlikely pass without African support. (Daily Star-Lebanon)

Billions of Promises to Keep (April 13, 2005)

In this New York Times piece, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan welcomes donor countries' pledges of $4.5 billion in aid to Sudan, but warns that peace will be difficult to sustain in the country if donor pledges remain unfulfilled. Annan calls specifically for funding for more African Union protection forces in Darfur and draws a parallel with Bosnia, where "Bosnian civilians watched the aid trucks continue to roll while their neighbors were gunned-down in full daylight."

Sudan May Face Renewed Civil War (April 11, 2005)

UN officials and teams from southern Sudan and Khartoum have drafted a document asking international governments to participate in a program to provide clean water, basic health and education. UN team leader of the Sudan Joint Assessment Mission Jon Bennett warned that the peace deal in Sudan could easily collapse if the international community does not contribute to the multi billion dollar project. Two thirds of the development package will come from Sudan's oil wealth. But Bennet added that the huge expectations following the North-South peace agreement could spark "a return to conflict based around local resources." (Scotsman)

Sudanese March against UN War Crimes Resolution (April 6, 2005)

Tens of thousands of Sudanese participated in a demonstration in Khartoum against Security Council Resolution 1593, which refers violators of human rights in Darfur to the International Criminal Court. The protesters labeled the resolution "unjust" and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan "an American agent." Noting that the US and France are "only interested in the country's oil," they instead called for Sudanese courts to try the crimes. Sudan's government also opposes the UN decision, arguing that it amounts to "neocolonialism" and "foreign intervention." (AlertNet)

Historic Step Toward Justice; Further Protection Measures Needed (March 31, 2005)

The UN Security Council has voted in favor of a resolution that refers Sudan to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for massive-scale human rights atrocities. The historic vote marked the first such time that the Council has referred a non-ICC party to the court. But the French-proposed resolution pandered to US hostility, by allowing citizens from countries that are not party to the ICC to avoid prosecution in relation to the Darfur crimes. Human Rights Watch finds this exemption "offensive" and vows that "it sets no precedent for the future."

UN Council Votes for Sanctions on Darfur Offenders (March 30, 2005)

With a 12 to 0 vote and abstentions from Russia, China and Algeria, the Security Council has imposed sanctions on Sudan. To avoid a Chinese veto, the resolution does not include an oil embargo, but strengthens the arms embargo on Sudan and imposes a flight ban over Darfur on Khartoum. (Reuters)

UN Approves 10,000 Peacekeepers for Southern Sudan (March 25, 2005)

The Security Council has unanimously adopted a resolution authorizing the deployment of 10,000 peacekeepers to Sudan. The peacekeeping force will monitor the North-South peace agreement, which foresees political power sharing and a division of oil wealth between Khartoum and Sudan's People's Liberation Army. (AlertNet)

France Pushes for UN Vote on Sudan; US May Veto (March 24, 2005)

France tries to reconcile polarized positions of Security Council members on whether to refer perpetrators of atrocities in Darfur to the International Criminal Court (ICC) by offering the Council an alternative draft resolution. To avoid a US veto, the proposal presses for the referral to the ICC yet exempts "non-parties to the Rome status." The French initiative follows a US draft which split one resolution on Sudan into three separate ones in hopes of sending a UN peacekeeping force to the country and imposing sanctions on Khartoum, but voting separately on bringing war criminals before the ICC. (AlterNet)

Sudan Leader: World Must Pressure Darfur Rebels (March 22, 2005)

Sudan's first Vice President Ali Uthman Mohammad Taha has called the Janjaweed "bandits […] beyond the government's immediate control" and feels the Sudanese government has received an unfair share of the blame for the crisis in Darfur. In an interview with the Washington Post, Taha dismissed the findings of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Darfur as "political judgments rather than legal findings." Taha, who played a major role in signing the North-South peace agreement, called on Europe and the US to pressure the rebels in Darfur and warned that Security Council sanctions could exacerbate the crisis.

UN Urges Larger African Peacekeeping Force for Darfur (March 18, 2005)

While the Security Council debated the establishment of a peacekeeping force for Southern Sudan, the UN's Special Representative for Sudan Jan Pronk met with European Union ministers in Luxembourg in an attempt to rally technical, financial and logistical support for African Union (AU) forces in Darfur. To protect the almost two million displaced people in Darfur, the AU would need to increase its troops from a current 2,193 soldiers to approximately 8,000 and focus the mission's mandate more explicitly on the protection of civilians. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

Stalemate Delays Sudan Peacekeeping Troops (March 17, 2005)

Due to a deadlock in negotiations on a Resolution on Sudan, the Security Council will likely renew the mandate of the current mission for the second time. The disagreement in the Council over how perpetrators of war crimes should be tried is further delaying the deployment of peacekeeping troops to Sudan. The current version of the US-sponsored draft resolution does not specify whether UN peacekeepers will also receive a mandate to protect civilians in Darfur. (Boston Globe)

Annan Calls Emergency Sudan Session of UN Council (March 7, 2005)

In an emergency Security Council meeting, UN ambassadors and Secretary General Kofi Annan discussed practical options to address the worsening security situation in Sudan and safeguard the January 2005 peace agreement. The Council will likely send a 10,000 strong peacekeeping mission to Sudan and impose a partial arms embargo, but will no longer consider oil sanctions as opposed by China and Russia. At the annual Munich Conference on Security Policy in February 2005, Annan urged NATO and the European Union to back the African Union in Darfur, but did not outline specific action. (AlertNet)

UN Paradox in Darfur and Congo (March 4, 2005)

This Christian Science Monitor piece compares the UN's bold response to the murder of nine peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of Congo with its cautious approach to the crisis in Darfur. The author highlights the Security Council's support of aggressive military action "as necessary for peace in Congo," but notes that similar action is out of the question in Sudan. Controversially, the author argues in favor of "military boldness," if only because "Africa deserves consistency in knowing the world won't stand by when mass slaughter goes unchecked."

Have Sudan's Islamists Really Abandoned Their Ambitions? (February 19, 2005)

This Daily Star opinion piece assesses the realities on the ground in Sudan following the signing of the Naivasha peace agreement. Despite promises of a new democratic Sudan, "regardless of race, religion, or tribe," many southern Sudanese advocate separatism. In order to establish a new, peaceful Sudan, the author argues, northerners will have to abandon their dreams of turning a multi-ethnic, multi-linguistic and multi-religious country into an Islamist state.

Carving Sudan: Hollywood's Helping Hand (February 17, 2005)

This article cautions against calls for a US intervention in Darfur, suggesting that the Bush administration is primarily interested in Sudan's oil. The author sees a clear link between Washington and John Garang's Sudan People's Liberation Army. In its fight against the regime in Khartoum, the US has armed rebels "who are loud in their expressions of regard for the US and Britain," and with the help of Hollywood actors Washington is spreading its "interventionist propaganda." (Taylor Report)

Genocide by Attrition (February 16, 2005)

This opinion piece sharply condemns the UN-appointed Commission of Inquiry on Darfur's response to what is, according to the author, "clearly genocide." The main reason for the international community's inability to address the crisis is "a continuing refusal to speak honestly about the genocidal nature of the human destruction in Darfur." The author laments the political interests that have prevented the use of the term "genocide" and finds the report "a moral outrage." (In These Times)

US Resolution Calls for UN Peacekeeping Mission in Sudan (February 15, 2005)

In its draft resolution, the US calls for an expansion of the arms embargo to the government of Sudan in relation to Darfur and for the creation of a large peacekeeping force to oversee the North-South Peace Agreement, but avoids the question of what kind of court should try war criminals. As permanent Security Council members, China and the US will likely invoke their veto powers in a vote on the draft, thus preventing sanctions and ICC referral for war criminals in Sudan. (Reuters)

Peace Accords Won't End War (February 14, 2005)

Le Monde diplomatique traces the history of the conflict in Sudan from the outbreak of civil war in 1955 to the signing of the North-South peace agreement on 9 January, 2005. The article casts doubt on the viability of the peace agreement protocols, arguing that the peace deal lacks popular support and that its signatories have the backing of only 30% of the Sudanese population. With conflict in Darfur raging, Khartoum can easily exclude the war-torn region from power distribution talks, and economic interests cloud prospects of the sharing of oil revenue between the North and the South.

The UN Report on Darfur: What Role for the AU? (February 10, 2005)

In its report on violations of human rights in Darfur, the UN International Commission of Inquiry does not foresee a role for the African Union (AU) in prosecuting war criminals. The AU has refused to label the violence in Darfur as genocide and African leaders lack "political will" to mediate in the region. According to Pambazuka, the AU is afraid to set a precedent by getting politically involved in Darfur, a decision that would pressure the underfunded and understaffed Union to take action in Africa's many other Darfurs.

New UN Force for Sudan Will Skirt Darfur Crisis (February 9, 2005)

Strengthening the African Union monitoring operation in Sudan, the UN will deploy a 10,000 strong military force to the country to oversee the North-South peace agreement signed in January 2005. Critics argue that UN troops are far more urgently needed in Darfur than in southern Sudan, where the force will be based, but UN special representative for Sudan Jan Pronk stresses the need for "a robust third-party force to maintain peace in war-devastated Sudan. (Inter Press Service)

Darfur Killings Not Genocide, Says UN Group (January 31, 2005)

In its report to the Security Council, the Commission of Inquiry on Darfur has found that violence in the region does not constitute genocide, but rather "crimes against humanity with ethnic dimensions." The report fails to find any evidence that Khartoum had "a specific policy of exterminating a particular ethnic group," although it names certain individuals "who may have acted with genocidal intent." In order to address war crimes and human rights violations in Sudan, the commission recommends that the Security Council refer the case to the International Criminal Court despite strong US opposition to the institution. (Independent)

Darfur: Never again? (January 26, 2005)

This article is critical of the protracted deliberation over how to qualify the situation in Darfur. The US has labeled the atrocities as genocide, which requires states to take immediate action under the Geneva Convention. Yet Washington continues to oppose Sudan's referral to the International Criminal Court (ICC), preferring instead to establish another ad hoc war crimes tribunal. The "moment of truth" for justice in Sudan will come with the Security Council debate on the topic, for which the Independent urges Britain to stay strong in its support of the ICC.

Don't Quench Thirst for Oil with Blood (January 21, 2005)

Human Rights Watch Executive Director Kenneth Roth condemns China's veto threats in the Security Council, which have weakened pressure on Khartoum to halt slaughter, rape and displacement in Darfur. China has prioritized its need for oil to sustain its booming economy and has ignored its responsibility as a permanent Security Council member to oppose human rights violations in Sudan. Beijing's business interests will likely also discourage China from voting in favor of an ICC referral for Darfur. Roth warns against "quenching China's thirst for oil with the blood of the people of Darfur." (Asian Wall Street Journal)

Peace in Sudan: Good News for People or Oil Companies? (January 15, 2005)

While the signing of a peace agreement on Sudan's North-South conflict brings hope to a war-torn nation, the January 9, 2005 peace agreement safeguards oil contracts signed during the war and Washington continues to give military aid to Sudan. In the past, Khartoum has been able to wage war and has managed to attract international investment on the basis of its largely untapped oil reserves. Sudan's oil wealth will unlikely foster "post-conflict development and nation-building." (Common Dreams)

No Justice for Sudan (January 10, 2005)

Sudan's historic Naivasha peace agreement does not end impunity for the perpetrators of human rights atrocities; an omission this Guardian article describes as "a key failure." In response, the author urges the Security Council-authorized commission of inquiry to refer the situation to the International Criminal Court so that persons responsible for the war crimes do not go unpunished.

A Final Peace Accord Within Grasp (January 1, 2005)

Sudan's government and rebel representatives have signed a permanent ceasefire agreement, finalizing negotiations to end the long-standing North-South civil war. The agreement includes protocols on power sharing and the division of oil riches and foresees a referendum on secession of the South. Khartoum and the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army have pledged to sign a final peace agreement on January 9, 2005, but the ongoing conflict in Darfur may complicate implementation of the peace deal. (Inter Press Service)


UN Admits Sudan Policies Failing (December 22, 2004)

As the humanitarian and security situation continues to deteriorate in Darfur, Secretary General Kofi Annan calls on the Security Council to make a ''real re-assessment'' as to ''whether or not our current approach is working, and what further measures should be taken.'' But options such as imposing sanctions against Khartoum or referring the case to the International Criminal Court are bound to face opposition from Security Council members like China and the US, forcing the UN to admit it has few alternatives left in Sudan. (Inter Press Service)

Troops Attack in Darfur as a Deadline Passes (December 20, 2004)

In spite of African Union warnings that it would take the issue to the UN Security Council, the Sudanese government has failed to meet a deadline to stop the fighting in Darfur. Although Khartoum has said it will immediately cease hostilities, helicopter strikes and continuing attacks say otherwise. Both rebels and the government have repeatedly violated ceasefires and peace talks were suspended after rebel groups walked out over a renewed government offensive. (Reuters)

Moral Clarity Blurs in Darfur Crisis (December 10, 2004)

The Darfur crisis continues to deteriorate and this Christian Science Monitor article alleges that "prospects for global action" may be fading along with "moral clarity." The author argues that increased rebel attacks create the impression of a "moral equivalence" between the government and rebels, giving the international community an excuse not to intervene in a "garden-variety African civil war." The article, however, faults Khartoum for the "genocide," and urges international action.

Where Is Europe? (December 9, 2004)

Noting the UN's paralysis in Sudan,"bogged-down America's" inability to act, and the African Union's limited mandate and resources, this opinion piece asks, "Where is Europe?" The authors suggest the EU's commitment to Africa is a "faí§ade" and that it uses foreign policy protocol, as stipulated in the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy, to avoid intervening in the Darfur crisis. The article also points to the EU's reluctance to act "unilaterally" without UN authorization of an intervention. (Washington Post)

UN Resolutions Continue To Be 'Weak and Meaningless' (December 2, 2004)

This opinion piece criticizes the UN for failing to impose strong resolutions against Sudan and to pressure Khartoum into fulfilling its commitments under previous agreements. As the situation in Darfur worsens, the author warns against temporary fixes and calls on the international community to address broader governance issues in order to prevent future repetitions of crises like Darfur. (Pambazuka)

Despite Pact, New Violence Stymies Aid in Sudan (November 26, 2004)

In spite of a November 9, 2004 peace agreement on Darfur, rebels and government forces have stepped up attacks in a "violent tit for tat," impeding humanitarian access and deadlocking the peace process. Rebel forces are disorganized and communication between leaders and the "rank-and-file" is poor, signaling a breakdown in the chain of command, which may be aggravating the violence. The African Union has not been able to stop the fighting and UN envoy Jan Pronk says the Security Council does not have "much leverage" in dealing with the conflict. (New York Times)

UN Security Council Adopts Resolution on Sudan (November 19, 2004)

The Security Council unanimously passed a resolution urging the Sudanese government and rebels to end the North-South conflict by December 31, 2004. Khartoum and rebel groups pledged to work towards a peace deal in response to the resolution and the prospect of large sums of international aid. Aids groups, however, slam the resolution as weak and a step backwards from past resolutions on the Darfur crisis. They urge the UN to impose sanctions and fear Khartoum will continue to persecute civilians while the international community turns a blind eye. (Middle East Online)

Urgent Push on Africa's Oldest Civil War (November 17, 2004)

At a rare meeting in Kenya, the Security Council is pushing the Sudanese government and rebels to sign a peace agreement on the 20-year old North-South conflict. Diplomats hope the agreement can serve as a "template" for the Darfur situation and maybe help ease the crisis in Uganda. China, however, says it will veto any resolution imposing sanctions on Sudan, leaving the Council without a "stick" to drive the peace process forward. As such, the US is urging the EU, World Bank and others to offer debt relief and development aid as a "carrot." Many aid organizations remain skeptical, saying, "Without tougher measures, a deal may never be struck." (Christian Science Monitor)

Arms Trade Fuelling Human Rights Abuse in Darfur (November 16, 2004)

Amnesty International reveals that many governments "deliberately or unwittingly" supply arms and military cooperation to Sudan, thus helping to perpetrate gross human rights violations. Amnesty International calls on the Security Council to impose a "rigorously monitored" mandatory arms embargo on all parties in Sudan and advocates for states to establish an "Arms Trade Treaty" to better control arms exports. Governments named in the report include the UK, China, France, Iran, Belarus, Poland, Lithuania, Ukraine, Brazil, India, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia.

Sudan, Rebels Reach Accord On Darfur (November 10, 2004)

In African Union-moderated talks, Khartoum has agreed to create no-fly zones in Darfur after rebels accused the government of bombing civilians and rebel positions. Khartoum also agreed to allow free access to humanitarian aid and to disarm the Janjaweed militia, and both sides said they will reveal their forces' positions to African Union monitors. Analysts say it is "naí¯ve" to think violations will not occur and further note that no political negotiations have taken place, negotiations they say are essential to a lasting peace. (Washington Post)

US Mulls Stopping Sudan Aid (November 9, 2004)

The UN Security Council will hold a formal session in Nairobi to pressure Khartoum and southern rebels to sign a peace agreement to the North-South conflict by the end of the year. The US and the EU have put aid funding "on hold" until a pact is signed, and a draft resolution in Nairobi will "encourage" the World Bank and others to develop an economic incentive package should the parties conclude a peace deal. A North-South agreement could serve as a model for the crisis between the government and rebels in Darfur. (Reuters)

UN Envoy Fears Anarchy in Darfur (November 5, 2004)

UN envoy to Sudan, Jan Pronk, warned the Security Council that "Darfur may easily enter a state of anarchy" as the government loses control of its forces and rebels face a leadership crisis. Pronk called for the African Union to rapidly deploy its troops to control the violence. (Associated Press)

Oil, Arms Stymie UN Efforts on Sudan (November 5, 2004)

Russia and China, both veto-wielding powers on the Security Council, oppose sanctions on Sudan due to oil and arms interests in the country. China is the largest investor in Sudan's oil industry and Russia sells weapons and military equipment to Khartoum. Some say the two countries also fear setting a precedent for international intervention for human rights violations because of poor human rights records within their own borders. (Inter Press Service)

'Prompt Action' Needed in Darfur (November 4, 2004)

Violence in Darfur continues unabated, lack of security obstructs aid delivery and Khartoum has imposed forced relocation upon refugees. In light of the worsening situation the UN calls for "prompt action," but US Ambassador John Danforth calls sanctions unlikely, saying, "It's not so much the stick; it's the carrot." (BBC)

Mandate Unclear as AU Heads for Darfur (October 29, 2004)

African Union (AU) peacekeepers make their way to Darfur as part of a new 3,000- strong force logistically supported by the EU and the US. However, the AU's mandate may be limited to protecting observers, in spite of calls to include protecting civilians. Peace talks between Khartoum and rebel groups remain stalled as rebels express pessimism about the talks, accusing the government of fresh bombings. (Business Day)

How a Crisis Catches World's Attention (October 28, 2004)

The Los Angeles Times questions why and how certain crises catch the world's attention while others continue virtually unnoticed. UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland explains that conflict areas where countries have a "strategic stake" are more likely to receive media attention. The humanitarian disaster in Darfur is, according to Egeland, "a combination of geographical isolation, political manipulation and government obstruction." In order to safeguard the peace talks to end the North-South war in Sudan, the UN and US did not take action against Khartoum, a "diplomatic blunder" that allowed the disastrous situation in Darfur to escalate.

Rare Peace Meeting To Convene in Nairobi (October 26, 2004)

The Security Council unanimously approved a US-sponsored resolution to meet in Kenya in November to encourage a peace agreement between the Sudanese government and southern rebels. The Council has only held four other meetings outside of New York since 1952 and US Ambassador John Danforth says the move shows that the parties are "on center stage in world affairs." Although the meeting does not guarantee a peace agreement, observers expect "something substantial to happen." (Associated Press)

Preventing Genocide: Time For a UN 911 (October 19, 2004)

H. Peter Langille argues that the international community's paralysis in acting on Darfur should spur the UN to develop a standing UN rapid-reaction force. Langille argues that a UN emergency service, or "UN 911" would be more "rapid, reliable, legitimate and credible" than existing options such as the UN's SHIRBRIG or regional organizations such as the African Union. (Globe and Mail)

The Politics of Slaughter in Sudan (October 18, 2004)

This Middle East Report Online article suggests that international focus on the humanitarian crisis in Darfur has obscured the politics behind the conflict. Darfur is but one part of a broader system of "colonization from within" whereby the elite core in Khartoum marginalizes and exploits areas of the west, east, north and south through a system of "divide and rule." The author argues that a piecemeal approach that does not deal with Sudan as a whole will only prolong future conflicts throughout the nation.

Sudan Needs Help to End Darfur Crisis (October 17, 2004)

African leaders from Sudan, Libya, Egypt, Chad and Nigeria spoke against imposing sanctions on the Sudanese government in a meeting held to discuss the crisis in Darfur. They also reiterated their support for an African Union mission and welcomed peace talks between Khartoum and the rebels scheduled for October 21, 2004. The leaders authorized Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi to communicate with rebels in Darfur until a solution is reached. (Reuters)

On the Brink of Collapse (October 11, 2004)

Khartoum's control is weakening and simultaneous negotiations with rebel movements in the South, East, and West are fragile at best. The Popular National Congress Party (PNC), recently accused of being involved in a coup plot, poses another threat to the Sudanese government. Due to Sudan's large oil reserves and the "unacceptability" of the Islamist PNC as an alternative regime, Western powers "will not lean too hard on Khartoum," but the international community will need to make a concerted effort to maintain Sudan's geopolitical integrity. (Power and Interest News Report)

UN Panel to Probe Genocide Claims in Darfur (October 8, 2004)

Secretary General Kofi Annan has set up a commission of inquiry on genocide in Darfur as requested by the Security Council in Resolution 1564. The commission will also look into violations of international law and human rights. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

How Can We Name the Darfur Crisis: Preliminary Thoughts on Darfur (October 7, 2004)

The author argues that genocide has not occurred in Darfur, although it may yet happen. He says Darfur is a political, not ethnic or cultural, problem that reflects the north-south conflict in the west. As such, the government, rebels and the international community must resolve the Naivasha peace process in order to successfully address the conflict in Darfur. (Pambazuka)

Sudan Accepts Blair's Five-Point Peace Plan (October 7, 2004)

Sudan has agreed to a five-point peace plan presented by UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, including acceptance of 3,500 African Union troops to serve as monitors throughout Darfur. Blair also urged Khartoum to return its troops to barracks and to reach a peace settlement in the North-South conflict by the end of 2004, warning that the US and EU would go to the UN with sanctions should Sudan fail to honor its commitments. (Guardian)

No More Mr. Nice Guy in Dealing With Sudan (October 4, 2004)

In this opinion piece, the author argues that Washington should take robust action on Sudan, "bolstered by the moral authority that comes from combating genocide," with or without the UN. He asserts that the UN resolutions passed on Sudan, weakened by Security Council members' interests, have been useless in forcing Khartoum to comply and calls for the "mailed fist of hard sanctions" after the failure of "velvet-glove" diplomacy. (Los Angeles Times)

US 'Hyping' Darfur Genocide Fears (October 3, 2004)

This Observer article cites conflicting figures between USAID and aid workers in Sudan regarding the humanitarian crisis, stating the catastrophe has been "widely exaggerated" by the US administration. Aid workers and diplomats have expressed concern over "USAID's role as an honest broker in Darfur" and the Observer points to Washington's desire for regime change in Khartoum.

Thousands More Troops for Darfur (October 1, 2004)

Sudan has agreed to allow 3,500 more African Union troops into Darfur but insists they will only function as monitors with a limited mandate. Some observers say that Khartoum consistently stops the 300-strong African Union team already on the ground from doing its job and Sudan has yet to sign anything regarding the new deployment. The African Union says it will need significant contributions to fund the extra forces. (BBC)

UN Envoy Urges More African Peacekeepers in Sudan (September 27, 2004)

UN special envoy for Sudan Jan Pronk calls for a large-scale increase in African Union troops in Sudan with a broad mandate including protecting villages, staying in camps overnight, monitoring Sudanese police forces and supervising disarmament. Although militia attacks have lessened, sporadic clashes continue and people are still afraid. No countries outside of the African Union have pledged any troops to Sudan. (New York Times)

Rwanda Tries to Stop Killings in Darfur (September 27, 2004)

Rwanda is sending 155 soldiers to Sudan to help stop the violence, which Washington has labeled genocide. Rwandan Foreign Minister Charles Murigande strongly criticizes the UN response to the crisis as well as UN peacekeeping efforts in the Democratic Republic of Congo, particularly the "voluntary" disarmament being implemented there. (Independent)

UN Darfur Resolution a Historic Failure (September 18, 2004)

Human Rights Watch calls the second UN Darfur Resolution "a pitiful response" to the crisis in Sudan. The group criticizes the Security Council for failing to impose oil and arms embargos on the Sudanese government and for "insufficiently expanding the international presence" to meet the civilian population's security needs.

UN Puts Sudan Sanctions Into Play (September 18, 2004)

The Security Council has passed a second resolution threatening to "consider" sanctions against Sudan should the government fail to comply with calls to improve security, disarm the Janjaweed, and hold the perpetrators of violence responsible under law. China, Russia, Algeria and Pakistan all abstained from voting on the resolution in opposition to the threat of sanctions. The crisis continues and critics wonder if the resolution is yet another example of international inaction. (Washington Post)

US Faces Opposition from at Least Five Countries to Resolution on Sudan (September 16, 2004)

Security Council members are strongly divided over a US-led resolution on Sudan. Russia, China, Pakistan, Algeria, and Angola take issue with the threat of oil sanctions, the call for an investigation into genocide, and assertions that the Sudanese government has failed to disarm militias and ensure security. Russia and China both hold veto power on the Security Council. (Associated Press)

US Proposes a Softer Threat on Sudan's Oil (September 15, 2004)

The US has revised a draft resolution on Sudan in an attempt to garner the support of Security Council members such as China and Pakistan, who are resistant to imposing oil sanctions. The revised draft states that the Security Council will "consider action" instead of "take action" should Sudan fail to comply. The draft also calls for a strengthened role for the African Union and an international commission to determine whether genocide has occurred. (New York Times)

EU Urges UN Probe of Atrocities in Sudan (September 14, 2004)

EU foreign ministers urge the UN to investigate whether the Darfur crisis constitutes genocide. The EU has thus far refrained from using the term "genocide" although Washington recently labeled the crisis as such. Khartoum attributes Washington's "genocide" label to election-year politics. With up to 10,000 refugees dying a month, Sudan is facing increasing international pressure. (Associated Press)

A Broken System (September 13, 2004)

Although the outrage of the international community over the crisis in Darfur has generated humanitarian assistance, it has not led to an effective political solution to the conflict. The authors argue that countries are too caught up in domestic politics and self-interested motives to take effective action. In their words, "the international system is broken." (Washington Post)

US Declares Genocide in Sudan's Darfur (September 9, 2004)

The US has declared that the Sudanese government and Arab militias have perpetrated genocide in Darfur. The government is concerned that the genocide label could further destabilize the region, causing the breakdown of both the Darfur and North/South peace processes. Use of the term "genocide" could influence a UN decision on a US-proposed resolution that threatens oil sanctions and urges expansion of the African Union mandate. (Reuters)

Sudan Tries To Squirm Out of UN Action (September 3, 2004)

In a report presented on September 2, UN special envoy Jan Pronk recommended enlarging multinational forces in Darfur to protect civilians. Khartoum has agreed to an expanded military presence but not to an extended mandate allowing international troops to disarm militia and rebel groups. The Security Council is set to debate further action in Sudan with the US and UK pushing for a tougher line against Khartoum. (Scotsman)

UN Set To Review Options on Darfur (August 31, 2004)

The Security Council deadline for Khartoum has passed. Continuing violence and a "chronic lack of security" in Darfur cause many to wonder if Khartoum has done enough to avoid unspecified "stronger measures." Some diplomats predict this week's Security Council discussions will end in a call for military intervention by African Union troops funded by the US and EU. (Chicago Tribune)

Sudan's Key Ties at the UN (August 31, 2004)

This Christian Science Monitor article examines the relationship between sanctions (or lack thereof) and Russian and Chinese economic ties to Sudan. Russia fears the use of sanctions will affect arms sales, and does not want sanctions against Sudan to set a precedent that may close off markets in the future. Russian arms sales combined with Chinese oil interests lead some to say, "For Russia and China, it may all boil down to the pocketbook."

Arab League Failing over Darfur (August 21, 2004)

The Arab League has failed to apply adequate pressure on Khartoum, rejecting UN Resolution 1556 and refusing to intervene economically and militarily. Analysts cite internal weakness, fragmentation, and a lack of political will as causes of the League's failure to act. While some say the League still has potential to influence Khartoum, critics say it has "lost its moral stance" and has again proved an ineffectual organization. (Inter Press Service)

Enough Imperial Crusades (August 18, 2004)

Peter Hallward traces the crisis in Sudan back to previous US and UK involvement, arguing that any direct Anglo-US intervention today is merely the soft face of imperialism. He asserts "This is a political question before it is a moral or humanitarian one. Today's humanitarian crisis is precisely a result of past political failure." In lieu of western intervention, Hallward advocates western support for African Union-led efforts, stating "Anglo-US forces now have only one moral responsibility: to stay at home." (Guardian)

Thirst for Crude Pulling China into Sudan (August 17, 2004)

Beijing, the largest importer of Sudanese oil, sees Sudan as a grip on the Middle East for its growing energy needs. A veto-wielding member of the Security Council, China is likely to block any imposition sanctions against Khartoum, says the Daily Star.

In Darfur, the UN Veto Is Proving as Deadly as the Gun (August 14, 2004)

The deadline imposed by the UN Security Council on Khartoum to disarm the Janjaweed militia is approaching. David Clark from the Guardian predicts that the international community will respond with "paralysis" to Sudanese inaction. He argues that veto power in the Security Council promotes "great power" interests at the cost of global justice.

Russia's Weapon Sales to Sudan Assailed (August 12, 2004)

Russia continues to sell advanced military weapons to Sudan despite international condemnation of Khartoum's role in the crisis in Darfur. Only a day before the UN resolution was passed, the Russian oil company Stroitransgaz won a contract to build a 366-kilometre pipeline in Southeast Sudan. Russia was one of the Security Council members blamed for watering down the wording of the UN resolution by insisting removing the word "sanctions." (Globe and Mail)

Action or Sanctions (August 12, 2004)

UN Special Representative to Darfur Jan Pronk tells Al-Ahram that the Sudanese government "has to do more" if it wants to avert international punitive measures. Acknowledging Kartoum is "on its way to make progress" in Darfur, Pronk says he has to report substantial progress to avoid the Security Council voting sanctions.

Sudan, UN Sign Darfur Plan (August 11, 2004)

Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail and UN Special Representative to Sudan Jan Pronk signed letters signaling the implementation of the "Plan of Action for Darfur". The plan requires the cessation of military activities in the safe havens and the protection of civilians. This move reveals Khartoum's willingness to avoid UN sanctions. However, UN officials are skeptical as violence continues in the region. (Herald Sun)

Arab League Rejects Sudan Embargo (August 9, 2004)

The Arab League rejected a possible United Nations embargo against Sudan, warning that economic sanctions "would only result in negative effects for the whole Sudanese people and complicate the crisis in Darfur." The League also criticized recent hints by various countries of "forced foreign intervention in the area." (Reuters)

When Intervention is Necessary, Who Can You Call? (August 5, 2004)

Can US power "be used for good in Africa or elsewhere in cases of mass killings or other crimes against humanity?" Acknowledging the harmful and destabilizing history of US intervention, particularly on the African continent, the author nonetheless argues that the scale of "genocide" in Darfur requires that United States lead a multilateral force to end the crisis. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Sudan-UN Plan to Tackle Darfur, Avert Sanctions (August 5, 2004)

UN Secretary General's Special Representative Jan Pronk and the Sudanese government devised a plan to tackle the humanitarian crisis in Sudan and avert possible international sanctions. Pronk commended Sudan for complying with Security Council Resolution 1556 by deploying policemen in Darfur and halting their own military actions against villages. (Reuters)

Counter-Insurgency on the Cheap (August 5, 2004)

This author describes historical cooperation and competition between Darfur's cultivators and its Bedouin tribes while tracing the divisive impact of Libyan Colonel Gaddafi's efforts to create an "Arab belt" in Africa. He argues that present violence is not the result of the Sudanese government's "ideological hubris" or its determination to secure natural resources but rather, is "genocide by force of habit." (London Review of Books)

Sudan Army's Anger Over UN 'War' (August 2, 2004)

Sudan's army described UN Security Council Resolution 1556 as a "declaration of war on the Sudan and its people" and vowed to fight foreign intervention in the region. Sudan's cabinet too criticized the resolution for insisting that the government disarm Janjawid militias within 30 days, and not within the 90 day period desired by the government. (BBC)

Cynical in Sudan (July 28, 2004)

Russia and China are likely to veto a Security Council resolution threatening to impose sanctions on the Sudanese government if the killings in Darfur continue. The Wall Street Journal argues that the two countries are reluctant to pressure the Sudanese government because "big business is at risk." Russia depends on arms deals with the government, while China holds the concessions to Sudan's "massive" oil reserves.

Darfur's Deep Grievances Defy All Hopes for an Easy Solution (July 25, 2004)

"Characterising the Darfur war as 'Arabs' versus 'Africans' obscures the reality" of the situation. This article argues that poverty, scarce natural resources and political ideology all contribute to the conflict in Darfur. (Observer)

America and Britain Seek UN Resolution to Back Arms Embargo on Sudan Militias (July 23, 2004)

A new US-sponsored draft resolution imposes an immediate arms embargo on Janjawid militias and rebel forces in Darfur. The resolution warns the Sudanese government of unspecified economic sanctions if that government fails to crack down on the Janjawid within a month. Yet a unanimous vote on the resolution is unlikely since Arab council members are resisting a new round of "Arab-bashing" after the Iraq war. (Independent)

Darfur's Manmade Disaster (July 22, 2004)

Race and natural resources are factors that caused and sustain the crisis in Darfur. By promoting its favored groups and selectively arming tribesmen even as it disarmed farmers, the Sudanese government promotes ethnic hatred and enhances competition over scarce water and pastures. (MERIP)

Blair: Nothing is Ruled Out in Sudan (July 22, 2004)

British Prime Minister Tony Blair refused to rule out the option sending British troops to aid refugees in Darfur, although he stated that such a move would presently be "premature." Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail responded that United Kingdom and the United States could face an "Iraq" situation in Sudan, with their troops viewed as "occupying forces" by the people of Darfur. (Guardian)

Carnage in Sudan Unabated (July 21, 2004)

The Sudanese government continues to back Janjawid militias in Darfur in spite of international pressure to halt violence in the region. This article outlines stricter international measures that might force the Sudanese government to disarm the Janjawid, such as targeted sanctions against implicated officials and the threat of an oil embargo on Sudan. (Chicago Tribune)

Darfur Peace Talks Break Down Before They Start (July 19, 2004)

An initial meeting between Sudanese government officials and rebel groups ended in a mutual "shouting match." The Sudan Liberation Movement and the Justice and Equality Movement put forward various demands as preconditions to political talks, including unimpeded access for humanitarian aid and an inquiry into allegations of genocide. The Sudanese government rejected these demands. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

UN Chief Warns of Pressure on Refugees (July 15, 2004)

The Sudanese government is pressuring civilians to leave refugee camps and return to their homes in Darfur. United Nations Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland claims that, by forcing refugees to leave the camps, the Sudanese government defies UN principles and violates its agreements with the UN. (Associated Press)

Darfur Rebels Say Not Right Time for Peace Talks (July 15, 2004)

The Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) refuses to attend upcoming talks with the Sudanese government because of that government's past failure to honor peace agreements. Instead, JEM wants the "international community" to send a peacekeeping force to Darfur, backing that force with a strong mandate to end the conflict. (Reuters)

Oil Driving US Move on Sudan (July 11, 2004)

According to the East African Standard, the United States' involvement in Darfur is not the result of a "newfound whim of philanthropy in Washington." Rather, the United States is pursuing a crucial strategic interest in Sudan--access to African oil. A potential pipeline, supplying Chad with "blood oil" from Southern Sudan," could pass through Darfur itself.

Sudanese Minister Warns US Not to Create Iraq-Style Crisis Over Darfur (July 10, 2004)

The United States introduced a Security Council draft resolution imposing sanctions on Janjawid militias in Sudan. Cautioning the US government against creating an "Iraq-style crisis" in his country, Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Ismail stated that UN sanctions would only weaken the government's efforts to reign in the militias and resolve the conflict in Darfur. (Agence France Presse )

Annan Urges the UN to Pressure Sudan to Disarm Militias (July 8, 2004)

The Security Council is debating a US draft resolution imposing sanctions on Janjawid militias in Darfur. Council members such as Pakistan and China oppose the resolution, arguing that sanctions could alienate the Sudanese government and strand "millions of Sudanese" without international aid. (Los Angeles Times)

Safeguard Darfur Refugees With Unarmed UN Monitors (July 8, 2004)

The Christian Science Monitor recommends that the UN send the Monitoring, Verification, and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) to Sudan for monitoring the government's disarmament of militias and ensuring the safe return of refugees. UNMOVIC, created to ensure Iraq's compliance with UN Security Council resolutions on disarmament, could serve as an effective human rights monitor in Sudan.

African Union to Send Troops to Darfur (July 5, 2004)

The African Union will send troops to Darfur to protect unarmed peace observers and monitor refugee camps and border regions between Sudan and Chad. Some analysts and diplomats view the mission as a "litmus test" in determining whether the African Union can fulfill its "self-imposed mandate to resolve conflicts in Africa." (Reuters)

Why Sudan Has Become a Bush Priority (June 30, 2004)

Are US pressures on the Sudanese government the result of "purely altruistic motives?" The Christian Science Monitor argues that by helping to end the crisis in Darfur, the Bush administration will shore up conservative voters looking to protect Christians in Southern Sudan, satisfy liberal groups concerned about human rights and "gain a diplomatic victory for the war on terror."

In Sudan's Darfur: Action, Not Just Aid (June 30, 2004)

The Christian Science Monitor argues that with the Sudanese government directly involved in the killings of civilians in Darfur, it will be very difficult for the international community to persuade Khartoum to rein in the Janjaweed militias. The author contends that "international efforts should aim at compelling the government to vacate the region, making Darfur a UN protectorate for the moment."

Sudanese Refugees Told to Stay Silent on Government, Militia Abuses (June 28, 2004)

The Washington Post reported that the Sudanese government allegedly sent 500 undercover personnel to a camp in Northern Darfur to "silence" refugees when US Secretary of State Colin Powell and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan visit the region. The government operatives told the refugees that they "would impersonate victims" when the delegations arrived and would claim that it is the rebels who are responsible for the atrocities.

Powell to Go to Sudan over Regional Strife (June 25, 2004)

The US is drafting a UN Security Council resolution condemning the Sudanese Government for failing to end the violence in Darfur as well as demanding broader access for humanitarian agencies. Washington officials also hinted at imposing an arms embargo on Sudan and freezing the financial assets of individuals linked to the atrocities. (Washington Post)

Annan: Don't Blame UN for Inaction in Darfur (June 22, 2004)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan criticized member states for using him as an "alibi" for their own inaction in Darfur. Annan defended the UN's level of action, crediting himself for convincing the Sudanese government to allow humanitarian workers and emergency supplies into the country." (Reuters)

Power of Persuasion (June 22, 2004)

Responding to calls by journalists and government officials for intervention in Darfur, the Guardian argues that military action against Sudan would worsen the plight of Darfur's refugees. International sanctions too, would "add to the suffering of an already impoverished population."

Chad Threatens to Quit as Darfur Mediator as Border Tension Rises (June 18, 2004)

Chad threatened to abandon its role as a mediator between the Sudanese government and Western rebels. Chadian officials fear that cross-border recruitment by government-backed Janjawid militias could spark "an inter-ethnic war between a coalition of Arabs and other ethnic groups in the region." (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

Annan: Intervention in Sudan Possible (June 17, 2004)

Although he refrained from describing the situation in Darfur as a "genocide," UN Secretary General Kofi Annan raised the possibility of international intervention to protect civilians in the region. (Associated Press)

Sudan's Shilluk Strife Mirrors Darfur War - UN (June 17, 2004)

50,000 to 70,000 civilians have been displaced by fighting in Sudan's central Shilluk province. The UN Office of Humanitarian Affairs reported that the conflict in Shilluk "mirrors the burning and looting by militias" in Darfur. (Reuters)

The Tragedy of Darfur (June 15, 2004)

Government-backed militias have killed tens of thousands of villagers in Western Sudan's Darfur province and hundreds of thousands of displaced people face death through disease and starvation. The "international community" has not acted forcefully enough and the UN Security Council has done little. Ten years after the Rwanda genocide, is another major tragedy unfolding?

White House Reconsiders its Policy on Crisis in Sudan (June 12, 2004)

The United States is investigating whether the crisis in Darfur can be classified as a "genocide." Such a determination would require the US, as a signatory of the UN Convention on Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, to intervene in the region. (New York Times)

Moving beyond Recognition (June 11, 2004)

Globe and Mail argues that acknowledgment by G8 members of the gravity of the Darfur atrocities represents a breakthrough in world leaders' attitude towards world crises. Now, G8 members must move beyond recognition and pressure the Security Council to adopt a resolution condemning the Sudanese Government's role in the violence.

Without Help, a Million Could Die in Darfur (June 11, 2004)

The Security Council seems increasingly concerned about the massacres in Darfur, but shows "no clear movement" toward humanitarian intervention in the conflict. The author argues that only such intervention, carried out by military force, can bring relief to Darfur's sufferers. (International Herald Tribune)

Big Country, Big Problems (June 10, 2004)

"Why is the situation in Sudan so intractable? Why doesn't the international community, perhaps through the UN, move faster?" BBC argues the potential size and cost of a peacekeeping operation in Sudan make any UN action in the country very difficult to carry out.

Britain Asks UN to Stop Darfur Raids (June 10, 2004)

Britain maintains that the Security Council draft resolution, which establishes a peacekeeping mission in Southern Sudan, must also address the conflict in Darfur. Yet, many Council members reject the idea, fearing that they would "be seen as Arab-bashing so soon after the Iraq war." (Independent)

Incommunicado Detentions, Unfair Trials, Torture and Ill-Treatment: The Hidden Side of the Darfur Conflict (June 8, 2004)

Amnesty International argues that the failure of the Sudanese legal system is not just a consequence of the Darfur conflict, but is "one of its causes." It observes that members of the Janjaweed militias, suspected of serious human rights abuses, benefit from "complete impunity," while those civilians voicing opposition against Kartoum are detained without trial.

300,000 Deaths Foretold (June 7, 2004)

Washington Post argues that it is too late to prevent death on a massive scale in Darfur due to the spread of disease and starvation. However, the US and other big powers should at least press for a Security Council resolution condemning the atrocities by the Sudanese government, and demand that Khartoum grant humanitarian agencies immediate access to civilians.

In Sudan, Staring Genocide in the Face (June 5, 2004)

After more than a year of brutal campaigns by the Janjaweed and the Sudanese government against black Darfurians, the international community still refuses to call the atrocities "genocide," fearing that it may compel states to intervene. The author argues that "whatever the formulation, there is more than enough going on in Darfur to justify preventive action." (Washington Post)

SUDAN: Donor meeting on Darfur appeals for US $236 million (June 4, 2004)

Representatives from 36 states and institutions appealed for $236 million in aid for internally displaced persons and other war victims in Darfur. UN Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland warned that the dispatch of these funds comes too late to prevent all additional deaths. (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

UN Council Plans for Peacekeepers in Sudan (June 3, 2004)

Britain introduced a draft Security Council resolution that would prepare for a UN peacekeeping mission in Sudan to enforce the landmark ceasefire agreement between the government and the rebels. The draft resolution, however, does not suggest any Council action in Darfur, which has "developed into the world's worst humanitarian crisis." (Reuters)

Break Through to Darfur (June 2, 2004)

A breakthrough in the Darfur crisis is only possible if the US, UN and other European powers work together to press the Sudanese government to end the atrocities—not just "treating symptoms and ignoring causes." The authors argue that the international community would be "complicit in the brutalization of Darfur" if it takes no concrete actions. (Los Angeles Times)

British-US Rift on How to Deal with Sudan 'Cleansing' (May 31, 2004)

The US favors sanctions on as a way to end the Darfur crisis. Britain, by contrast, maintains that sanctions and military intervention are only "drastic and ineffective response[s] to the crisis" and would not produce any immediate action to remedy the situation. (Telegraph)

Joy at Historic Sudan Peace Deal (May 27, 2004)

While the peace accord between the Sudanese government and the Southern rebel group is a huge step forward in ending Africa's longest-running civil war, the government has taken "a terrible step backward" in Darfur. Kartoum's involvement in violence against civilians in the region has also thrown doubt on its willingness to comply with the agreement for the south. (BBC)

See No Evil in Sudan (May 18, 2004)

Failing to understand the lesson of "doing too little and too late" in Rwanda, the US and international community once again refuse to take actions in violence-ridden Darfur. Strategic national interests are the main cause of non-intervention by the big powers. (Wall Street Journal)

United Nations Security Council Ignores Ethnic Cleansing in Sudan's Darfur Region (May 17, 2004)

This Axis of Logic article contends that the ultimate goal for US and European powers in Sudan is to exploit its enormous oil wealth. This desire has arguably shaped their policies of non-intervention in Darfur. The author denounces the big powers for failing to prevent one of the biggest humanitarian catastrophes, which has to date resulted in the deaths of a large number of civilians.


Source: New York Times/Nicholas D. Kristof

The World Should be Ready to Intervene in Sudan (May 15, 2004)

With atrocities worsening in Darfur, the effort by the international community to pursue non-military options for the region's crisis has proven ineffective. In reviewing the guiding principles and pre-conditions for the case of military intervention, the International Crisis Group argues that "the time for forceful outside intervention [in Sudan] is unmistakably approaching." (International Herald Tribune)

'No More Villages To Burn' (May 13, 2004)

UN Emergency Relief Officer Daniel Augstburger regretted that temporary peace has returned in Darfur only because there are "no more villages to burn." Augstburger expressed concern over continuing harassment and abuse of civilians, allegedly committed by Arab militiamen in complicity with the Sudanese government. (News24)

UN Says Sudan Relief Effort Inadequate (May 12, 2004)

With the heavy rain season looming, aid workers speak of a a "race against time" to provide humanitarian aid to Sudanese refugees. Lacking the funds to launch an adequate humanitarian campaign, the spokeswoman from the World Food Program said agencies on the scene are facing a tough situation where there are "not enough people on the ground to deliver aid and not enough aid to deliver." (Boston Globe)

Big Powers Wary over Sudan Crisis (May 8, 2004)

UN Security Council members remain reluctant to condemn the Sudanese government for committing atrocities in Darfur. Despite the report of the UN Commission on Human Rights, which described the disaster as a "reign of terror" and "repeated crimes against humanity," Council members have only pledged to closely monitor developments on the ground. (BBC)

After the War, the Food Crisis (May 4, 2004)

James Morris, Executive Director of the UN World Food Program, has warned that a severe food crisis is further complicating the situation in Darfur, threatening the lives of a considerable number of refugees. Morris has also expressed concern over the disappearance and kidnapping of many children, which is creating a new humanitarian crisis. (Inter Press Service)

Sudan Said Will Keep Seat on UN Commission (May 4, 2004)

The African group has nominated Sudan for a seat on the UN Human Rights Commission, despite an earlier report issued by the Commission expressing concern about the worsening humanitarian conditions in Darfur. This article reveals the worrying trend that nations with poor human rights records are gaining election to the Commission, aiming to cover up their own abuses. (Associated Press)

In Sudan, Militiamen on Horses Uproot a Million (May 4, 2004)

This article describes the atrocities committed by the Arab militiamen, the Janjaweed, in Darfur. Human rights organizations and international officials criticize the Sudanese government for using the Janjaweed as a tool to pursue a "radical policy resembling ethnic cleansing." (New York Times)

UN Calls for Security in Sudan (May 3, 2004)

The UN warned that the situation in Darfur would deteriorate unless the government takes immediate measure to rein in armed militias and to offer sufficient protection for internally displaced people. (Brunei Bulletin)

Hopes for Sudan Peace Tempered by Distrust (May 1, 2004)

This article argues that distrust has overshadowed the peace agreement between the Sudanese Government and the Southern rebels. A UN peacekeeping mission would be necessary to ensure that both sides respect the deal to end the protracted civil war. (Reuters)

Clampdown on Media and Cover-Up of Sudan Catastrophe Condemned (April 29, 2004)

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) denounced the Sudanese government for heavily restricting media access to Darfur in an attempt to conceal the unfolding disaster. While welcoming the ceasefire agreement between Kartoum and the rebels, the IFJ stressed the need for rigorous international monitoring so as to avert human rights abuses and other humanitarian disasters. (One World Africa)

Annan Urges Parties to Darfur Conflict to Persevere with Peace Talks (April 27, 2004)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan urged the Sudanese government and the Darfur rebel groups to strictly observe the ceasefire agreement for the benefit of civilians. He also urged the parties to continue negotiating "in good faith." (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

Stalling in Sudan...(April 26, 2004)

This Washington Post article criticizes the Sudanese government for reneging on its ceasefire promise in Darfur and for denying humanitarian access to civilians. By doing so, Khartoum not only intends to cover up evidence of its atrocities, but also makes thousands of people suffer from starvation and lack of medical attention.

Sudan Minister Hails UN Rights Vote (April 24, 2004)

The Sudanese government continues to reject claims of its involvement in ethnic cleansing in Darfur. It has declared a "victory" after the UN Human Rights Commission decided not to condemn Kartoum for the alleged atrocities. (Associated Press)

Sudan: Government and Militias Conspire in Darfur Killings (April 23, 2004)

This article denounces the Sudanese government for carrying out massacres on Darfur civilians in conjunction with the Arab militias known as the janjaweed. As Kenneth Roth, the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch observes, "these militias work in unison with government troops, with total impunity for their massive crimes." (Human Rights Watch)

Sudan Accuses US of Hindering Peace (April 20, 2004)

The Sudanese government has accused the US of hampering the peace talks, which aim to end the Sudanese civil war with the southern rebels, by pressuring the negotiating parties with the threat of sanctions. (Agence France Press)

Thousands Flee New Sudan Unrest (April 18, 2004)

Some 50,000 people have fled their homes in Southern Sudan as new violence between pro-government militia and rebels breaks out in the region. The UN says aid operations in the region are suspended as a result of the violence. (BBC)

Sudan Rebels Accuse Khartoum of Violating Darfur Truce, Killing 32 (April 15, 2004)

The Sudanese rebel group, Justice and Equality Movement, has accused the Khartoum government of violating the ceasefire agreement. The group also doubts the impartiality of the Chadian government as a mediator in the peace talks. (Agence France Press)

Western Conflict in Sudan Threatens to Derail Peace Process (April 15, 2004)

This article details the history of the civil war and the subsequent peace agreements among various warring parties in Sudan. It also assesses how the ongoing conflict in Darfur has affected the north-south peace process and how US strategic interests have dictated Washington's involvement in the peace deal. (Power and Interest News Report)

World's Promises Failing Ethnic Groups in Sudan (April 14, 2004)

This article criticizes the international community for failing to monitor the ceasefire agreement between the Sudanese government and the rebels. An expert on Sudan warns that the insufficient political commitment by the international community would render long-term peace in Sudan an illusion. (Inter Press Services)

Sudan 'Breaking Darfur Ceasefire' (April 13 2004)

The US has criticized the Arab militias for carrying out sporadic attacks in Darfur despite the ceasefire agreement between government forces and the rebels. (BBC)

Annan Says Force May be Needed in West Sudan (April 7, 2004)

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has sent a "wake up call to the international community" that immediate actions, which may include military force, are needed to prevent "the risk of genocide" in Darfur. (AlertNet)

US Pressures Sudan to Stop Violence in Darfur Region (April 7, 2004)

The US has stepped up its "diplomatic effort" to stop the violence in Darfur. The president has issued a statement which strongly urges the Sudanese government to immediately end local militias' brutalization of local people and to allow unrestricted humanitarian access to the area. (Voice of America)

UN Probes Sudan "Ethnic Cleansing" (April 6, 2004)

The UN is set to embark on a 10-day mission in Darfur to investigate what the UN Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland has described as "ethnic cleansing activities." By doing little to halt the atrocities, Egeland argues the Sudanese government has sent a message to the militias that it is condoning their crimes. (Reuters)

Bloodbath in the Making (April 2, 2004)

This article denounces the international community for its slow reaction to what it calls "ethnic cleansing" in Darfur and analyzes the underlying reasons for the delay. The author urges international leaders to learn the lessons of the Rwanda genocide and act promptly to stop the killings from spreading further. (Globe and Mail)

Coup Plot Threatens Peace Talks (April 2, 2004)

The arrest of army officers for attempting to overthrow the government in Sudan has caused panic over the future of the peace process, between the government and the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA). Skeptics doubt the existence of the alleged coup plot however and accuse Khartoum of using it as a pretext to derail the peace talks and "to intensify the genocide in Darfur." (Inter Press Service)

Ethnic Cleansing, Again (March 24, 2004)

The article accuses the Sudanese government of aiding the Arabic militias in carrying out "ethnic cleansing" against the black Africans in Darfur. With thousands of refugees fleeing into Chad to escape the atrocities, the UN's Sudan coordinator, Mukesh Kapila, urges the international community to take immediate actions to stop "the world's greatest humanitarian crisis" from developing. (New York Times)

Humanitarian Access to Darfur Limited, Despite Sudan's Claims (February 13, 2004)

The Sudanese government continues to deny international aid agencies access to its war torn Darfur region. Some of these agencies have accused the government of using "what small amounts of food are getting through to advance its war aims." (Refugees International)

Sudan's Peace Balancing Act (January 22, 2004)

Although the peace agreement between Sudanese government and the southern-based rebels has brought new hope in ending the bitter civil war, the deal is "fraught with dangers" including the ongoing conflict in Darfur, unknown motives of the warring parties in the agreement, and outsider's strategic interests in the peace process. This BBC article argues that "far deeper changes are required from all the participants" if the peace process is to have any significant meaning.

Why the US Wants Sudan Peace (January 7, 2004)

This article argues that US desire to secure its "strategic national interest" in Sudan—oil resources in the South—drives its active participation in the Sudanese peace process. (BBC)


Q&A: Hope in Sudan (December 29, 2003)

This BBC article analyzes the background of the Sudanese civil war, and the peace agreement between the government and the rebel group.

Sudan's Oilfields Burn Again (February 10, 2003)

The Sudan government's recent offensive in the Western Upper Nile oilfields jeopardizes the peace in the region. Khartoum's long-time strategy of depopulating oil-rich areas includes the abduction of women and children, gang rapes, burning of villages and other atrocities. (International Crisis Group)


Sudan and Russia Forging New Ties Around Oil and Arms (January 22, 2002)

Russia signed an oil-for-arms deal with Sudan, in an effort to enhance its influence in the region. The government of Sudan undoubtedly makes the deal in an effort to modernize its army and suppress the separatist movement in the South. (Stratfor)


Sudan Government Tops List of Those Causing Agony for Oil (October 13, 2001)

This article from the New York Times offers interviews and personal accounts from the civil war in Sudan. They confirm allegations of the Khartoum government's intentional attacks on civilians, forced relocation policies, and the central role of oil in providing the resources and the motivation for sustaining the war.

Sudan Civil War Becoming War Over Oil - UN Report (October 10, 2001)

A new report released by the UN asserts that oil extraction in Sudan is fueling the ongoing civil war, thus confirming the allegations of various human rights and church groups. Despite such evidence, the US has allowed the UN Security Council to lift sanctions on Sudan in an effort to gain the cooperation of Khartoum, where Osama bin Laden allegedly resided from 1991 to 1996. (Reuters)

Rebels Warn Against 'Blood Oil' (September 6, 2001)

Countries of southern and eastern Africa have continued to buy cheap Sudanese oil. In addition the moral implications of purchasing "blood oil," continued payments to Khartoum will undoubtedly protract the ongoing civil war. (Financial Gazette)

Link Between War And Oil (August 15, 2001)

The Sudanese People's Liberation Army (SPLA) recently launched an attack on the country's most productive oilfield, reinforcing earlier findings on the linkage between oil extraction and conflict. (IRIN)

Would Buying Sudan's Oil Undermine Peace Efforts? (July 16, 2001)

Despite the Sudanese government's record for using oil revenues to wage war against the Christian minority, foreign companies continue to invest in Sudan's oil sector. (African Church Information Service)

If IGAD Has Failed on Sudan, How About UN? (June 18, 2001)

This editorial questions the UN's choice of peacekeeping operations. Although the UN is actively involved in the DRC, Sierra Leone, Angola, and Eritrea, it has virtually ignored the devastating civil war in Sudan. (All Africa)

Oil Money Supercharges Sudan's Civil War (June 13, 2001)

Although Western governments criticize Sudan's abysmal human rights record, North American and European companies continue to invest in Sudan's oil sector, which has fuelled the nation's devastating civil war. (International Herald Tribune)

The Regulatory Void (May 17, 2001)

Christian Aid implicates various European and Asian oil companies in human rights violations in Sudan. The report calls for the establishment of a Global Regulation Authority (GRA) to ensure the accountability of TNCs, but does not clarify which international body would oversee its operation.

The Scorched Earth (March 2001)

A detailed report by Christian Aid, describing the role of foreign oil companies in escalating and sustaining the civil war in Sudan.


Sudanese Contradictions (August, 19, 2000)

Despite the recent bombing of the UN emergency aid aircraft, Sudan has maintained a surprising level of progress in its foreign affairs and economy. The internal situation, however, has remained as precarious as ever in this country which has been engulfed in civil war since the mid fifties. (Economist)

Sudanese Squabble Over Oil Revenues (July 2000)

Rival rebel factions are uniting in an effort to shut down the oil fields in the southern region of Sudan. Southern rebels insist that the $1.2 billion a year generated by the pipeline will be spent by the government to fight rebels instead of contributing to development. (Africa Analysis)

US, Sudan OK Delay of UN Sanctions Debate (June 28, 2000)

The world seems to be rotating around the US's timeframe. Sudan and the US have agreed to postpone the discussion of lifting the UN sanctions against Sudan until after the US Presidential election in November 2000. (United Press International )

Sudan: The Human Price of Oil (May 2000)

Link to Amnesty International's report detailing the background of the Sudanese conflict and illustrating the human rights violations that accompany the extraction of oil in the Sudan.

Human Security in Sudan (January 2000)

Report of a Canadian Assessment Mission prepared for the Minister of Foreign Affairs, released February 14, 2000. Following its release, the Canadian government announced it would not impose economic sanctions against Talisman, but instead would re-open its diplomatic representation in Sudan.

Sudan: Oil and War (October 9, 1999)

A Canadian company, Talisman Energy, is complicit in empowering an illegal regime in Sudan which terrorizes civilians. The article includes an eight-point indictment of Talisman and calls for their withdrawal from the region.(APIC)

Fight for Sudan's Oil is Killing Civilians (October 5, 1999)

Toronto Globe and Mail article about oil companies operating in Sudan - a country where civil war continues to rage.

Sudan: NGO Report (November 28, 1998)

Aid agencies seek new ways of ending the crisis.

Aid Groups Press UN for New Effort to End Sudan's Civil War (October 31, 1998)

Private aid groups, currently sending millions of dollars worth of food and medicine to relieve starvation and suffering in Sudan, are pressing the United Nations to make a vigorous new effort to end the nearly 30-year civil war there instead of merely feeding its victims. (New York Times)

More Active UN Role in Sudan Urged (October 26, 1998)

CARE International, Oxfam, Doctors Without Borders and Save the Children urge the UN Security Council to take a more active role in ending Sudan's civil war, which has killed an estimated 1.5 million people. (Associated Press)



FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Global Policy Forum distributes this material without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. We believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C § 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.