Darfur 'belongs to Arabs now'The genocide continues unchecked in Darfur, eastern Sudan. At least against those few who are left. African peacekeepers are expected to arrive in this week, none too soon.
Janjaweed Arab militias are engaging in a throrough campaign of ethnic cleansing against Darfur's black population (which, ironically, comprises mostly fellow Muslims; though if so-called Christians can kill each other in Northern Ireland, why should I be surprised?). The Janjaweed are almost universally believed to be armed and supported by the Sudanese military junta. Not surprisingly, the regime denies this but the genocide campaign has involved aerial attacks by bombers and helicopter gunships, things that are a little out of the price range of your everyday rag-tag bandit militias.
One British official who has been working in western Darfur told journalists the region remained largely "bandit country" in which the Janjaweed were "doing what they want, where they want, when they want to the non-Arabs".
Having driven the farmers from their villages into makeshift refugee camps, the Janjaweed were keeping them there by continuing the beatings and sexual attacks, he said. This ensured that the militia was free to do as it wished in the rest of the country.
One refugee summed up the widely believe sentiment: "The government of Sudan doesn't want blacks, they want only Arabs. Before the first attack, some Arabs in the region came to tell us: 'We're going to send you blacks away and claim this land for ourselves.'"
In one typical attack that was documented by Human Rights Watch in July, a group of women and girls were stopped at a Janjaweed militia checkpoint in West Darfur. Militia members told them that "the country belonged to the Arabs now and, as they were there without permission, they would be punished." All of the women were then beaten, and six girls aged 13 to 16 were raped.
HRW added: In response to the Security Council's demand that Janjaweed militia members be disarmed, the Sudanese government has instead begun to incorporate them into official state security units such as the police and semi-regular forces such as the Popular Defense Forces.