Racism in Sudan

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Racism in Sudan is a complex matter due to the racial mixture of various populations. Sudanese Arabs are among the 600 tribes who live there, few times elements of their society view "blacks" with disfavor.[1][2] Sudan has been in the Arab League since 1956. Skin whitening is relatively common among some African ethnic groups.[3][better source needed]

The main issues of racism have involved the civil war. In the Sudan, black African captives in the civil war were often enslaved, and female prisoners were often used sexually[citation needed], with their Arab captors claiming that Islamic law grants them permission.[4] According to CBS news, slaves have been sold for US$50 apiece.[5] In September, 2000, the U.S. State Department alleged that "the Sudanese government's support of slavery and its continued military action which has resulted in numerous deaths are due in part to the victims' religious beliefs."[6] Jok Madut Jok, professor of History at Loyola Marymount University, states that the abduction of women and children of the south by north is slavery by any definition. The government of Sudan insists that the whole matter is no more than the traditional tribal feuding over resources.[7]

During the Second Sudanese Civil War people were taken into slavery; estimates of abductions range from 14,000 to 200,000. Abduction of Dinka women and children was common.[8]

The Darfur conflict has been described by some as a racial matter. Unlike the Southern Sudanese the Fur people are primarily Muslims so the conflict has been argued to be more ethnic rather than religious.[9] Although debates about water and land usage were also a factor.

Beginning in 1991 elders of the Zaghawa people of Sudan complained that they were victims of an intensifying Arab apartheid campaign.[10] Vukoni Lupa Lasaga has accused the Sudanese government of "deftly manipulat(ing) Arab solidarity" to carry out policies of apartheid and ethnic cleansing against non-Arabs in Darfur.[11] Alan Dershowitz has pointed to Sudan as an example of a government that deserves the appellation "apartheid,"[12] and former Canadian Minister of Justice Irwin Cotler has also criticized Sudan in similar terms.[13]


  1. ^ War of Visions by Francis M. Deng
  2. ^ Providence Journal Op-ed
  3. ^ Sudan Tribune
  4. ^ Islam and Slavery
  5. ^ Curse Of Slavery Haunts Sudan CBS News. January 25, 1998
  6. ^ U.S. State Department report says 'religious intolerance remains far too common' around world. September 6, 2000 CNN US News
  7. ^ Jok Madut Jok (2001), p.3
  8. ^ "Slavery, Abduction and Forced Servitude in Sudan". US Department of State. 22 May 2002. Retrieved 20 March 2014. 
  9. ^ Christian Science Monitor
  10. ^ Hilde F. Johnson, Waging Peace in Sudan: The Inside Story of the Negotiations That Ended, Trans Pacific Press, 2011, p. 38.
  11. ^ Vukoni Lupa Lasaga [1] "The slow, violent death of apartheid in Sudan," 19 September 2006, Norwegian Council for Africa.
  12. ^ Alan Dershowitz, The Case Against Israel's Enemies: Exposing Jimmy Carter and Others Who Stand in the Way of Peace, John Wiley and Sons, 2009, p. 24.
  13. ^ Hubert Bauch [2] "Ex-minister speaks out against Sudan's al-Bashir" Montreal Gazette, march 6, 2009.

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