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Opinion

Darfur ... and now more genocide in Sudan?

Evidence is piling up that genocide is taking place in the southern border region of Sudan, affecting tens of thousands of Nuba people. But the world is dillydallying, just as it did with Darfur, Rwanda, and Srebrenica.

By Eric Reeves / August 4, 2011



Northampton, Mass.

Yet again, Sudan shows all the signs of accelerating genocide, this time on its southern border.

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The question is whether the world will now respond more quickly – and effectively – than it has to the years-long atrocities in Darfur, in western Sudan. Over four years ago the International Criminal Court indicted a senior Khartoum official for crimes against humanity (2007); most recently it has indicted President Omar al-Bashir for genocide (2010). But to date Khartoum has continued to express only contempt for the ICC and human rights reporting generally.

Another test of the world’s resolve to halt ethnically targeted human destruction now presents itself in a border state known as South Kordofan (like Darfur, in Sudan). Al-Bashir has unleashed a campaign against many tens of thousands of Nuba people, a grouping of indigenous African tribes. The Nuba have long made common cause with the people and former rebel fighters of the newly created country of South Sudan.

The catastrophe in South Kordofan is daily becoming more conspicuous, both in scale and in the ethnic animus defining Khartoum’s military and security operations in the region.

Beginning with events of June 5, strong evidence is growing of house-to-house searches for Nuba people and those sympathizing with the northern wing of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army. Also, compelling evidence points to roadblocks that have similarly targeted Nuba. Most Nuba found were arrested or summarily executed. This has occurred primarily in the Kadugli area, capital of South Kordofan.

Most disturbingly, a great many eyewitness accounts of mass gravesites are being reported; a number of these accounts are collected in a leaked UN human rights report from late June.

The extraordinary indictment rendered in this report is confirmed by definitive satellite photography from the Satellite Sentinel Project, based at Harvard University; these photographs clearly indicate large, parallel mass gravesites – capable of holding many thousands of bodies. Evidence from the UN report, as well as eyewitness accounts from many Nuba who have escaped Kadugli, confirm the findings of the satellite project.

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