The Janjaweed are a combination of Chadian and Darfurian Arab partisans, previously tolerated by the Sudan Government and pursued local agendas to control of the land. The majority of Darfur's Arabs, the Baggara confederation, soon began their presence in the war over grazing territory and land use rights.
The cast of Darfur - 2009 includes: Az Abrahams as Sadiq Assante Barnard as Baccry Angel Barnard as Sittina Maggie Benedict as Halima Noah Danby as Theo Schwartz Matt Frewer as Ted Duncan Edward Furlong as Adrian Archer Tauriq Jenkins as Musa Busisiwe Joyce as Elham Martin Kintu as Janjaweed Militia Kristanna Loken as Malin Lausberg Ezra Mabengeza as Janjaweed Militia Harrison Makubalo as Young Janjaweed Soldier Owen Manamela as Janjaweed Militia Moses Mapukata as Elderly Man Ntombizine Margaret as Elderly Woman Fatima Masapu as Munira Tshegofatso Mashao as Sumah Nikosinathi Mgweba as Janjaweed Nkosinathi Mgweba as Janjaweed Militia Lehasa Moloi as Janjaweed Jeep Driver Yolanda Msimanga as Mende Sarah Muhoho as Fatima Charly Mukwayanzo as Sudanese Army Officer Astara Mwakalumbwa as Kaltouma Kaashief Noroordien as Janjaweed Militia Maboni Nyakta as Abok Anthony Oseyemi as AU Soldier Anelisa Phewa as Janjaweed Militia Rea Rangkaka as Janjaweed Militia Sammy Sheik as Janjaweed Commander Thando Sibeko as Poni Denzil Thompson as Janjaweed Militia Billy Zane as Bob Jones
Yes, there was a truce that was made on January the 9th 2005 but was broken by the Janjaweed, then later on the 5th of May 2006, which was signed by the Sudanese government and the smallest of 3 main groups of rebels. Soon after the agreement was signed it was broken again by the Janjaweed and has not been restored since.
Much of the information in this answer comes from an essay by Brendan Koerner in slate.com. What he wrote in 2005 is still fairly accurate, although some of the violence has died down since then. In the African country of Sudan, as well as in its neighboring country, Chad, there has been ongoing violence and civil strife, which has created more than 1 million refugees. The majority of that violence has been attributed to militias known as the Janjaweed. The word, an Arabic colloquialism, means "a man with a gun on a horse." (Some sources translate it as "a devil on horseback.") Janjaweed militiamen are primarily members of nomadic "Arab" tribes who've long been at odds with Darfur's settled "African" farmers, who are darker-skinned. Until 2003, the conflicts were mostly over Darfur's scarce water and land resources-desertification has been a serious problem, so grazing areas and wells are at a premium. In fact, the term "Janjaweed" has for years been synonymous with bandit, as these horse- or camel-borne fighters were known to swoop in on non-Arab farms to steal cattle. The Janjaweed started to become much more aggressive in 2003, after two non-Arab groups, the Sudan Liberation Army and the Justice and Equality Movement, took up arms against the Sudanese government, alleging mistreatment by the Arab regime in Khartoum. In response to the uprising, the Janjaweed militias began pillaging towns and villages inhabited by members of the African tribes from which the rebel armies draw their strength-the Zaghawa, Masalit, and Fur tribes. (This conflict is entirely separate from the 22-year-old civil war that has pitted the Muslim government against Christian and animist rebels in the country's southern region. The Janjaweed, who inhabit western Sudan, have nothing to do with that war.)
Leaders in Darfur firstly was asking for autonomy and full control of their economy (having in mind abundance of gas and petroleum). This was not approved by Sudanese Govt. Years passed and at point Darfurians organized themselves and demanded freedom for their territory. Sudan at all not liked it. Started arresting and harrousment. Darfurians revolted, took some arms in their own hand. Then Sudanese Govt (President Umr Al Bashar), created and sponsored Janjaweed Militia. In 2003, having the support with arms and money the Janjaweed (also backed by Sudanese Army) launched attacks to kill the people indiscremenantly. This is the beginning of mass killing, diplacement of ordinary people, burning, raping..and more. This is genocide!
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