Darfur is a region in Sudan, Africa, that had a population of approximately 6 million people prior to 2003.
Due to neglect by the government, Darfur has been the target of genocide (deliberate killing of a large group of people) by the Khartoum government.
On September 9th 2004, United States Secretary of State Colin Powell said the Darfur conflict was genocide, and called it the worst humanitarian crisis of the 21st century. This is the first time the US has ever declared genocide while the genocide was still happening.
The genocide is racial-based, because the Muslim Arab Sudanese are killing the Muslim Black Sudanese, by way of the Arab militia (known as the Janjaweed) and the Sudanese Army.
Since the genocide began in 2003, an estimated 400,000 people have died directly or indirectly from the attacks.
The violence is conducted so that when the Janjaweed enter the village on camelback or horseback, they cause as much terror as possible: gang raping women and children, destroying homes and buildings, and shooting men and anyone who tries to escape.
Approximately 3 million people survived the attacks, but were displaced to Internally Displaced Persons camps.
In 2009, the Sudanese government expelled 13 International Aid organizations and shut down 3 domestic relief institutions, which were working to feed and protect the displaced persons from Darfur. This expulsion removed 50 percent of the aid that was being delivered to Sudan, putting millions of people’s lives at risk.
Only about half of those who have been displaced received any aid. Others were left wandering the desert, suffering from starvation and illness.
Despite the abundant natural resources available in the region, the vast majority of Sudan’s people live in poverty, and the government has been described as ‘the most repressive regime in the world’.
Humanitarian refugee camps in Chad and Sudan are overcrowded, disease infested, and prone to attacks. About 20% of the Sudan population resides in a camp, and a majority of these are young people.