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Genocide in Darfur: How Sudan covers it up

Genocide in Darfur may be a debated legal question, but there's no denying that Sudan is working to cover up its crimes against human rights there. 

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Most governments don’t acknowledge it. The Sudanese president dismisses it. Darfurians demand that it be recognized. Academics, activists, and lawyers dispute whether it is still occurring or whether it occurred at all. International Criminal Court (ICC) judges debate standards of evidence surrounding it.  The nature of recent attacks this past week by Sudanese government forces and militia allies against defenseless civilians potentially augurs its resurgence. And if a fledgling peace process continues to move forward, then any evidence of it ever happening may well be swept under the rug.

The “it” in question is Darfur’s genocide. Seven years after a small rebellion in western Sudan by Darfurian insurgents unleashed a massive counter-insurgency strategy by the Sudanese government and its Janjaweed militia allies, the debate continues: What should be done about the genocide? How can justice and peace simultaneously be pursued? 

The ICC’s recent ruling that genocide charges against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir are possible gives new life to the issue. And responding to a YouTube question posed by the Enough Project, President Obama appeared to reverse his administration’s stated policy of an “ongoing genocide” by referring to it in the past tense. How do we make sense out of all this?


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