The government of Sudan continues its long-standing policy of attacking civilians. In addition to the ongoing crisis in Darfur, forces under the command of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir have carried out attacks against civilians in the disputed Abyei territory, and the states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
Throughout its offensives, the Sudanese government continues to perpetrate war crimes and crimes against humanity against its own civilians. In 2011, more than 500,000 Sudanese civilians were driven from their homes by government action and that number continues to grow in 2012. Indiscriminate aerial bombardments and ground attacks are preventing farmers from planting crops in South Kordofan and Blue Nile and denial of international humanitarian aid has set up a crisis that is nearing famine conditions.
Since the 1989 overthrow of the Sudanese government by a military coup led by current President Omar al-Bashir, the Sudanese government has regularly deployed troops, tanks, and local militias against its own citizenry. During the second phase of the Sudanese Civil War, Sudanese government forces bombed civilians in the Nuba Mountains and forcibly cleared civilian areas to facilitate oil exploration. The government also empowered local militias to attack civilian supporters of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) across the country. The combination of combat tactics and conflict-induced famine led to the death of an estimated 2 million Sudanese during the 22-year long Civil War (1983-2005).