Last Updated: Thursday, 23 October 2014, 10:31 GMT

Chronology for Southerners in Sudan

Publisher Minorities at Risk Project
Publication Date 2004
Cite as Minorities at Risk Project, Chronology for Southerners in Sudan, 2004, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/469f38e22.html [accessed 23 October 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
Date(s) Item
601 - 700 The coming of Islam into the pre-existing Sudan
1820 - 1881 Turco-Egyptian rule
1896 - 1898 Anglo-Egyptian Condominium
1899 - 1955 British rule institutionalizing the North-South schism.
1955 Mutinies in Equatoria signaling the first civil war
Jan 1, 1956 Independence of Sudan
1958 - 1964 Military government led by Ibrahim Abboud
1964 - 1969 Civilian government
1969 - 1985 Military government led by Jaafar al-Numeiri
1972 The end of civil war (1955-72) by the Addis Ababa Agreement
1983 The resumption of civil war
1985 Transitional Military Council (TMC)
1986 - 1989 Civilian government under Sadiq al-Mahdi
1989 Military government led by Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir
Mar 1990 By late March, fighting between the government and the SPLA had intensified around the government-held garrisons in south-western Sudan. With both the government and the SPLA using starvation as a weapon, more than 500,000 people were reported to have starved to death.
Apr 1990 A Cabinet reshuffle strengthened Islamic fundamentalist influence in the government.
Oct 1990 The government prevented U.N. relief aircraft from distributing food into the southern provinces, claiming that such relief was being used to help the rebels.
Nov 1990 Sudan's pro-Iraq stance during the Gulf crisis led to its internationally isolation. The ruling Revolutionary Command Council (RCC, chaired by Bashir), strongly influenced by the Islamic fundamentalist National Islamic Front (NIF), was reported to have detained, tortured, and executed hundreds of political opponents.
Jan 1991 Eight million Sudanese faced starvation aw a result of a famine which was more devastating than that of 1984-85.
Feb 1991 The RCC passed a decree that divided Sudan into nine states. They in turn were subdivided into 66 provinces and 281 local government areas. This regional reorganization was proclaimed by the government as a power devolution towards resolving the North-South conflict. The SPLA rejected it as "unrealistic."
Mar 1991 The Bashir regime agreed to host a large new relief effort in the Sudan as a result of international pressure.
Jul 1991 The RCC and Garang respectively undertook diplomatic activities in order to influence the international community to be sympathetic to their point of view in peace negotiations.
Aug 1991 The SPLA was split into two groups, the Torit (with Dinka tribal dominance, led by Col. John Garang de Mabior) and the Nasir/United faction (with Nuer dominance, led by Riek Machar), owing to incompatible views on Sudan's future. While John Garang's faction has been committed to building a united, secular Sudan, Machar's faction advocates an independent black state.
Oct 1991 The planned peace talks between the government and the SPLA had been postponed owing to a split in the SPLA leadership.
Nov 1991 Clashes began between rival factions of the SPLA.
Dec 1991 The divided SPLA groups ratified a 12-point peace plan. By late December, over 5,000 civilians in south-east Sudan were reported to have been killed in fighting between the two factions. In 1991 alone, at least 1 million people have moved across borders and over 7 million have been internally displaced.
Jan 1992 Between November 1991 and February 1992, the Nasir faction killed 5,000 civilians, displaced 200,000 civilians, stole their cattle, and burned their villages in the Bor-Kongor area.
Feb 1 - Mar 31, 1992 The government launched its largest offensive against the SPLA in order to seize strategic garrison towns and cut off sources of relief supplies to civilians in SPLA-held areas. The government attacked on four fronts in the South where the SPLA controlled some 90 percent of the territory until early 1992. After seizing the towns of Rumbek and Yirol, government forces practiced scorched-earth policies and burnt villages, leaving over 100,000 people displaced.
Apr 1992 The southern towns of Kongor and Bor fell to government forces. The fall was attributed to the fact that SPLA forces had been weakened both by their internal spilt and by the fall of the Ethiopian government which had provided a haven for the rebels.
May 26 - Jun 5, 1992 While continuing fighting, peace talks between the government and the SPLA factions proceeded in the Nigerian capital of Abuja.
Jul 13, 1992 The southern town of Torit fell to government troops and Garang fled to Kajoraji, a border region.
Sep 1 - Oct 31, 1992 Fighting intensified in Juba and Malakal. By early September, over 40,000 Nuba civilians had been moved by the government from their homes.
Nov 1992 At least 4.5 million people (about 75 percent of the South's population) had fled from their homes in search of food and security in other parts of Sudan or Ethiopia and Uganda
Feb 1993 Amnesty International, the British Anti-Slavery Society, the International Labor Organization (ILO), Africa Watch, and other human rights monitoring organizations reported the Sudanese government's grave human rights violations and Arab enslavement of indigenous people in southern Sudan. An estimated 75,000 women and children are currently enslaved. Pope John Paul II visited Khartoum and called for religious tolerance.
Mar 1993 Garang of the Torit faction unilaterally announced a cease-fire, but the other factions of the SPLA (Machar of the Nasir Faction and William Nyuon Bany of the "Forces of Unity") refused to accept it. Joseph Oduho, the SPLA's elder statesman, who was the figure most likely to reconcile the opposing factions, died.
Apr 1 - May 31, 1993 The government and the Torit faction began peace talks in Abuja on April 8, but adjourned on May 18 without a final statement materializing because of disagreement about the distribution of powers to the states. Slavery and "ethnic cleansing" in southern Sudan and the Nuba Mountains area of South Kordofan have been conducted by government forces. 4,000 Nuba and Dinka tribespeople were massacred, enslaved, or subjected to gang rape between 1990 and early 1993. In April, Dinka troops from the Torit faction retaliated against the Nasir faction's massacring of thousands of Dinka civilians in late 1991, by murdering hundreds of civilians in Nuer. Also, the Torit faction allegedly tortured and killed captured government soldiers. On May 5, seven rebel commanders split from the Machar's faction. On May 17, peace talks between the government and the SPLA-United (led by Machar) took place in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, but "they share little in common, [except for] a loathing for Garang" (Horn of Africa Bulletin, Vol.5, No.3, May-June 1993)
May 28, 1993 The SPLA's Torit, the SPLA-United, and the United States ambassador to Sudan signed a cease-fire accord in Nairobi. The Sudanese government immediately protested this accord, rejecting any foreign intervention.
Aug 5, 1993 The government deployed air force bombers to cut the Torit faction's supply route, displacing 100,000 people in southern border towns.
Oct 1993 On October 2, Alfred Lado Gore, a Marxist militant, broke with Garang and launched the Patriotic Resistance Movement of South Sudan (PRMSS) in Nairobi, composed of 24 southern Sudanese intellectuals. They criticized SPLA abuses including rape and armed robbery in areas they hold. On October 22, Garang of the Torit faction and Machar of the Nasir/United faction agreed on principles of peace in Washington, D.C. But when presented with a final text of the proposed declaration of agreement, Garang (leader of the Torit faction, the SPLA-Mainstream) did not sign it, insisting that his faction should be called simply as the SPLA/M. The government has forcibly cleared indigenous people from the Nuba Mountains and resettled them in so-called "peace villages" under the control of the army and government-created militia, Popular Defence Force (PDF).
Nov 1993 On November 2, President Bashir affirmed his commitment to the implementation of Islamic law. In early November, the government bombed Thiet in western Equatoria. The cease-fire which was agreed between the SPLA factions in Washington, D.C., was broken owing to fighting between the factions in eastern Equatoria and other places. The meeting of reconciliation for two SPLA groups, scheduled for November 15 in Nairobi, was postponed.
Dec 1993 Since the SPLA took over Tambura in 1990, Tambura's trade, farming, economic activities, and schooling has nearly collapsed. The SPLA-held areas in southern Sudan have few civil institutions such as police and courts.
Feb 1994 The government launched its largest offensive yet against the rebels to attempt to win the war outright or to force more SPLA concessions at the negotiating table. About 1000 people per day have been fleeing to northern Uganda since January in anticipation of the coming offensive. In the past two years, the government has retaken all principle towns in the South and restricted the rebels to guerrilla warfare. The renewed fighting was condemned by UN Secretary-General Boutrous Boutrous-Ghali. The SPLA made an appeal to the UN to appoint mediators to end the conflict and to send troops if necessary. The government has long been opposed to outside interference. Two UN agencies also appealed for assistance for four million who have been affected by the drought and war. SPLA leader Garang accused the government of Zaire of opening its borders to Sudanese army troops. Zaire denied the accusations.
Jul 1994 The Sudanese government declared a unilateral cease-fire, but rebels said fighting continued in the South. Peace talks have been under way since March 1994. The majority of southern Sudanese have entered the "hunger gap"-the period between the exhaustion of food stores from the previous harvest and the availability of food from the present year's harvest. Fighting has complicated relief efforts to get food through to the South.
Aug 1, 1994 The Sudanese government announced that it would never accept terms set by the southern rebels for self-determination and separation of religion and the state.
Sep 1994 About 200,000 face starvation in the upper Nile Region as a result of drought and fighting. March-June 1993 and 1994 saw fighting between clans of the Nuer ethnic group over grazing and water resources.
Nov 1994 Intense fighting between SPLA factions was reported in recent weeks in the Bahr al-Ghazal area. Thousands have fled the area. The government in Khartoum announced that compulsory military training for secondary school pupils would begin shortly.
Dec 1994 Eritrea broke diplomatic relations with Khartoum after accusing it of seeking to destabilize the Eritrean government.
Jan 1995 Renewed fighting between government forces and rebels in the south has been sending about 500 refugees per day into northern Uganda. The government claimed its forces had crushed the separatists in the South. The SPLA was severely weakened by the 1991 split of their ranks and have been driven back to the border areas of Uganda and Kenya. One million Sudanese, mostly southerners, are reported to be on the brink of starvation in 1995.
Feb 1995 The breakaway rebel group SSIM (Southern Sudan Independence Movement) announced a reconciliation with the SPLA from which it split in 1991.
Jun 1995 Bashir's government offers "rehabilitation" to SPLA ranks giving up their arms. He also denounces a meeting of opposition groups in Eritrea as an attempt to destabilize Sudan's government. Uganda and Sudan agreed on reestablishing relations after peace talks in Malawi. Uganda had cut diplomatic relations with Sudan in April. The Egyptian government accuses Khartoum of involvement in the failed attempt on Hosni Mubarek's life in Addis Ababa.
Aug 1995 A cease-fire between the SPLA and government declared in March has broken down.
Sep 1995 Clashes between differing southern factions were reported. Rebels claimed the government sent warplanes to launch raids in the rebel-held areas of the south. At least twenty people were killed in the air raids. Bashir vowed to end the conflict on the battle field.
Oct 1 - Nov 30, 1995 The SPLA went on the offensive killing, wounding or dislodging 3000 Sudanese government troops from the southern town of Parajok. The offensive followed a series of cease-fires negotiated with the assistance of Jimmy Carter since April 1995. The rebel offensive was fast gaining ground in the South during these months, overrunning 8 strategic government garrisons along the Sudan-Uganda border. Bashir accused Uganda of providing troops for the SPLA and of launching cross-border attacks in support of the SPLA.
Nov 1995 The UN issued a report on the human rights abuses in Sudan. The government was accused of murder, torture, turning a blind eye to the reemergence of slavery in the country. Rebels were also admonished for abuses. The government and rebels held several rounds of peace talks in Nairobi under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Drought and Development (IGADD). They had failed to make any progress by the beginning of 1996.
Nov 15, 1995 President al-Bashir said his troops were advancing towards Uganda which he has accused of invading southern Sudan. Uganda denied involvement in the recent offensive by the SPLA. The October 25 attack has been its most successful in four years.
Nov 28, 1995 The government has stepped up its campaign to draft militias after the rebel offensive began in October. President al-Bashir accused Uganda and Eritrea of being behind the SPLA offensive and vowed to raise one million men to fight the rebel movement.
Mar 30, 1996 John Garang announced the capture of two frontier town: Pochalla in Upper Nile Province and Khor Yabus in Blue Nile Province beginning a new SPLA offensive. By April, the SPLA controlled the whole length of the Ethiopia-Sudanese frontier, with the exception of a government garrison at Marwut, from Kenya to Kurmuk.
Apr 10, 1996 The government and two rebel factions that had broken from the SPLA in 1991 signed a peace agreement in Khartoum. Riak Machar signed for the Southern Sudan Independence Movement and Kerubine Kwanyin Bol signed for the SPLA-Bahr al-Ghazal faction. The agreement stated that after peace and stability and a reasonable level of development had been established in the south, a referendum should be held to enable people to determine their political aspirations. The main rebel SPLA faction led by Garang denounced the agreement as a sham and vowed to continue fighting. Foreign diplomats in the region also suggested that the agreement was worthless without the involvement of the SPLA which has been on the offensive in the South since October.
May 29, 1996 Lt. General Joseph Lagu, leader of the original southern rebel movement Anya Nya, and Samuel Aru Bol, leader of the banned Union of Sudan African Parties, both urged all southerners to back the April peace agreement. The southern rebel movements are split largely along ethnic lines with the main SPLA faction composed mainly of Dinka, SSIM of Nuers and SPLA-United of Shilluk. Kwanyin Bol, militia commander of SSIM, reportedly has pushed SPLA from his home region of Bahr el Ghazal and Riak Machar, leader of SSIM, controls the upper Nile and Kwanyin Bol Bahr el Ghazal region. Equatorians have been militant supporters of independence for the south and have suffered at the hands of the SPLA
Jun 4, 1996 Medcins Sans Frontieres reported that at least 700 people have died of Cholera in southern Sudan in the past seven weeks.
Jul 18, 1996 Relief agencies reported that Sudanese refugees were crossing into Ethiopia at a daily rate of 175. This is up from the rate of 57 per day occurring in May of this year.
Aug 11, 1996 The Sudanese government has given its approval to the United Nations to allow it to fly in relief supplied to thousands of people affected by flooding in southeastern Sudan. The umbrella organization Operation Lifeline Sudan has been requesting since June to be allowed to fly aid to some 15,000 people who were stranded by flooding. The area, Pochalla, has been under the control of the SPLA since March. The World Food Program resumed food deliveries to some 700,000 people facing starvation in the south in late July. It was the WFP's first large-scale operation in 10 months.
Oct 25, 1996 The SPLA dismissed rumors that it was holding peace talks with the government. The SPLA said it was committed to IGAD (Inter-governmental Authority on Development) peace initiatives which are deadlocked since the National Islamic Front walked away from talks in September 1994 after its proposals were rejected by the SPLA.
Oct 30, 1996 Politicians who had opposed President al-Bashir's government since 1989 have decided to join his government. The Rev. Philip Abbas Gaboush of the Sudan National Party, Joshua Dei Wal of the Federal Party, and Ahmed Balal and Marghani Sulieman of the Democratic Union Party said they would support al-Bashir in his efforts to end the conflict in Sudan.
Dec 1996 The SPLM, the SPLA's political wing, teamed up with six northern opposition groups to form the NDA (National Democratic Alliance). Their goal is to topple the government of the National Islamic Front. With the formation of the new alliance, the struggle in Sudan has become a much broader conflict. The SPLA rebellion had been confined to the south, but the NDA has brought the war closer to Khartoum capturing towns along the border with Ethiopia and Eritrea.
Dec 12, 1996 Former Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi reportedly plans to join the armed opposition to al-Bashir's government. He had been living under house arrest since September 1995, but went to Eritrea to announce his intentions. Eritrea severed diplomatic ties with Sudan in 1994 because it accuses of Sudan of supporting the Eritrean Islamic Jihad which aims to overthrow the Eritrean government. Sudan in turn accuses Eritrea of supporting the SPLA.
Dec 16, 1996 Former SPLA members accused the organization of discrimination. The Nuba broke from the SPLA when Garang made an alliance with northern opposition groups who recognized the SPLA's demand for self-determination for the south. The Nuba are the largest black African group in Northern Sudan and they say the accord between the SPLA and northern groups show that the SPLA is concerned only with the south and will leave them to their fate if the south becomes autonomous.
Jan 14, 1997 The SPLA said a joint rebel force had captured key Sudanese government army garrisons at al-Kalil, Diamonsour, and Shali al-Fil in the southern Blue Nile region. On 12 January 1997, SPLA forces captured Kurmuk and other army garrisons. It said the governor of Kurmuk was one of several prisoners taken by the SPLA.
Jan 17, 1997 The United Nations and Christian Solidarity International (CSI) said Sudanese forces were destroying villages in the southeast. CSI said Sudan had launched a scorched earth policy in the Blue Nile region which had left some 50,000 people on the verge of starvation. The area has long been closed to the U.N. and other international relief agencies.
Jan 20, 1997 Rebel forces launched a campaign to take the key town of Damazin which has a hydroelectric dam which supplies Khartoum with electricity. The Blue Nile area is rife with conflict as the rebels attempt to get the upper hand in the 14 year-old civil war. As of 23 June 1997, there were no reports that the SPLA had succeeded in capturing Damazin.
Jan 22, 1997 The U.N. has been warning for the last three months that food security is under threat in Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Somalia and Sudan due to severe droughts. It said about 5000 Sudanese refugees had crossed into Ethiopia and more were expected to do so. The SPLA humanitarian wing, Sudan Relief and Rehabilitations Association, has also warned of a severe food shortage in 1997.
Jan 23, 1997 An exile opposition group, the National Democratic Alliance, has called on Egypt to help overthrow the Sudanese government. Egypt has not said it will help the rebels despite its long dispute with Khartoum over the presence in Sudan of Egyptian Islamists fighting the Cairo government.
Jan 28, 1997 The government has accused rebel forces of raping women and girls captured during their current offensive in the east. The State sponsored Sudanese Women's General Union, which announced last week it had joined the jihad against the rebels, charged at least 80 girls were raped on the eastern front. The government stopped sending women to the front line because of the reports of rape. There was no independent confirmation of the rapes.
Feb 4, 1997 Fighting in eastern Zaire and northern Uganda has forced thousands of Sudanese refugees to flee camps in the two countries and head back to southern Sudan. There were reported to be about 200,000 refugees in Uganda and 80,000 in Zaire.
Feb 24, 1997 The military announced the recapture of Karguloo in southern Equatoria, 10 km north of the Ugandan border. The government claims Ethiopia aided in the capture of towns in the east and the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) claims the government is supported with weapons by Iran, Qatar, and China.
Feb 27, 1997 The Sudan Alliance Forces said all foreign oil companies operating in Sudan were considered legitimate military targets. A relatively small but effective group, the SAF is based in the east around the town of Kassal. It is a member of the NDA.
Mar 10, 1997 The SPLA captured the southern town of Kaya in western Equatoria. The government blamed Ugandan and Zairian rebels for the attack.
Mar 28, 1997 The SPLA said it seized three garrisons in the northeast and was threatening Port Sudan. The garrisons were named as Korora, Tiairba, and Shabri. Garang said the SPLA was mounting a major offensive in the northeast and that his forces were active on five fronts in northeast, south, east and central Sudan.
Apr 2, 1997 A government minister said aid workers would become military targets if they continued to work in rebel-controlled areas in the south. The government ordered the creation of a security committee to investigate the role of relief agencies in military operations. Agencies will have to submit reports on their work and comply with any guidelines issued by the committee. The Minister of Information and Culture also stated that government forces had launched an offensive in order to regain areas of eastern Sudan that were recently captured by rebels.
Apr 21, 1997 An agreement to end Sudan's civil war was signed in Khartoum. Among those signing the agreement were Riak Machar of SSIM, Kerubino Kwanyin Bol of SPLA-Bahr el Ghazal, and Theophillo Ochan of EDF (Equatoria Defense Force). The agreement comes out of the Political Charter signed by several rebel groups and the government in April 1996. It provides for a four-year transitional government in Juba followed by a referendum on separation or unity for the south. Southerners will also no longer be subject to shari'a laws and they would exercise their legislative rights based on customary law. President al-Bashir said he would also declare an amnesty and allow for the repatriation of thousands of Sudanese refugees. The agreement was not signed by John Garang's SPLA which has been making advances in the country since January.
May 2, 1997 Yei, population 24,000, has run out of food. It was once the breadbasket of Sudan and aid workers have warned that the lack of food might hamper the resettlement of about 70,000 refugees from Uganda. The SPLA said about 800 soldiers were killed in the battle for Yei in March and that it is afraid it is running out of food to feed captured government soldiers.
May 11, 1997 Uganda's Yoweri Musevini and Sudan's Omar al-Bashir agreed to release all prisoners captured in border clashes. Uganda cut diplomatic ties with Sudan in 1995.
May 21, 1997 The SPLA reported major gains in the south. In the southwestern region, only the capital Wao remains under government control. The capture of Yei in March opened up SPLA supply routes and appears to have been the key to recent SPLA gains. The SPLA also said government troops were deserting to their side.
May 26, 1997 The IGAD subcommittee on Sudan has failed to arrange direct meetings between al-Bashir and Garang. A scheduled summit during which the two sides were to meet was postponed because of the preparations for the upcoming OAU meeting in Harare.
Jun 9, 1997 The government said the SPLA tortured to death a senior government official it took prisoner when it captured the provincial capital of Rumbek in the south. The SPLA captured a swathe of land in eastern Sudan in January and has held it since.
Jun 16, 1997 Parliamentarians from western Sudan are now demanding self-determination for their area following the agreement under which the south is to decide in 2001 whether it becomes a separate state. The politicians charged that resources of the west were allocated to the south in the April agreement. Areas, including the oil rich areas of southern Kordofan and Abyei, that, before 1956, used to be part of southern Sudan are to be reincorporated into the south. Western leaders also want the federal government to compensate them for the negative effects of 14 years of civil war. Riak Machar said the Westerners' demands were unjustified and said that the five groups that signed the accord would see the fulfillment of their demands as a violation of the April accord. Demands for self-determination by people in the east have been rejected numerous times by the government which maintains the east has no reason to seek special treatment. The south is the breadbasket of the country and people in other areas fear if it gains independence, their regions will suffer.
Jul 10, 1997 Twenty thousand Dinka have been displaced in the wake of fighting. They have moved from Bahr el-Ghazal region to Kordofan.
Sep 26, 1997 John Garang, SPLA leader, has appealed for international food aid to southern Sudan. He also said his forces controlled all of southern Sudan. The World Food Program (WFP) delivered some food aid in early September, but is being hampered by the government's refusal to give aircraft permission to fly into SPLA controlled towns. SPLA-United faction leader Lam Akol rallied to the government after 11 years in the bush. SPLA-United was one of the groups signing the April peace agreement with the government.
Oct 2, 1997 The SPLA announced a great victory over government forces in Asilaro, 12 miles from Torit in East Equatoria.
Oct 15, 1997 The WFP sent food aid to Juba where 370,000 people in both government and rebel held areas are in need of relief. The town has been cut off from supplies since the SPLA cut off all land routes to it. The government is said to be persecuting Christians and other southerners in the town.
Oct 26, 1997 The International Women's Committee in Support of Nuba Women and Children claims genocidal human rights abuses by the government in the Nuba Mountains region. Using reports from Africa Rights and other NGOs and Church organizations, the group alleges that local militias use murder, rape, abduction, slavery, orchestrated famines, forced conversion to Islam, and forced displacement into peace camps as political weapons. Nuba leaders blamed both the government and SPLA for abuses against them. In 1983, the Nuba population was estimated at 3 million. Since then, half the population has fled and most young men are fighting with the SPLA.
Nov 27, 1997 At least 35 people have been killed in communal violence between the Dinka and Nuer in Gedaref province. Riak Machar's United Democratic Salvation Front runs southern Sudan under the April peace agreement. There is some rivalry between the Dinka and Nuer within the UDSF. Dinka chiefs accuse Dr. David de Chard, the Nuer Youth Organization leader, of initiating the incident because Nuer assume all Dinka are SPLA supporters and because SPLA-government peace talks in October-November failed. Prof. de Chard denied involvement in the conflict.
Dec 18, 1997 The Southern Sudan Defence Force of the UDSF reported it had taken over Chalaro after inflicting heavy losses on SPLA troops. The SPLA has claimed a string of victories over the government in recent months.
Feb 11, 1998 The government imposed a ban on relief flights to Bahr el-Ghazal. Aid organizations are attempting to get government leaders to let the flights go through since hundreds of thousands in the area risk starvation.
Feb 18, 1998 Those rebel groups which signed a peace accord with the government in April 1997 were asked to lay down their arms.
Feb 26, 1998 After the government paritialy lifted a flight ban, food aid arrived in Bahr el-Ghazal where 100,000 people have settled after being displaced by recent fighting in the area. Earlier in the month, the United Nations appealed for $109 million in aid for 4 million civilians facing starvation and disease in southern Sudan.
Mar 7, 1998 About 100 people have been killed and 46 villages burned down in ethnic clashes this year in the western state of Darfur. The clashes between Maselit people and Arab tribesmen involve disputes over grazing and water resources.
Mar 13, 1998 Government aircraft flew four sorties over Yei in western Equatoria region dropping 13 bombs. Five fell on Yei's hospital complex killing 11 and rendering the hospital useless. Yei was taken by SPLA rebels in March 1997. The SPLA downed 4 government planes during 1997.
Mar 30, 1998 Sudan's parliament approved a draft constitution, its first since 1984. It asserts that Sudan is a unitary state in which Islam is the majority, but allows for other religions. It also states that shari'a, custom, and national consensus are the basis for legislation in the state.
Apr 2, 1998 About 300 student conscripts were killed by government security forces as they tried to escape from the military training camp at Helefun near Khartoum. At least 150 were shot and 55 drowned in their escape attempt. The government introduced conscription of school-age students more than 2 years ago.
May 2, 1998 The SPLA has said it repulsed a summer government offensive on three fronts. It also announced that on 29 April, the SPLA released 800 POWs. Over 300 decided to join various rebel groups fighting the government; others returned to their homes; others want political asylum in other countries.
May 11, 1998 The National Democratic Alliance has dismissed the proposed Constitutional Bill of Sudan on the grounds that it does not meet the expectations of all interested parties.
May 12, 1998 Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin said the government and SPLA have agreed on an internationally supervised referendum on the future of southern Sudan. The two sides have been meeting for three days in Nairobi for peace talks sponsored by IGAD. However, Mesfin added that there are still differences between the two parties, including defining where the border of the south lies.
May 25, 1998 The Nuba people held a ceremony in the Nuba Mountains Kordofan region to mark the 15th anniversary of the SPLA rebellion.
Jun 1998 Famine in Sudan is more widespread than previously thought. According to Medecins sans Frontieres, hundreds of thousands of children in Bahr el-Ghazal region are severely malnourished and close to one million people are near starvation. It is currently targeting 2.2 million people for food assistance. The food shortage is caused by a combination of poor harvests due to lack of rain and heavy SPLA-government fighting in the region. Many in Bahr el-Ghazal are displaced from surrounding villages. In early May, government militias accompanied by nomadic horsemen invaded the region killing as many men as possible and abducting women and children. Villages have been razed and abandoned. Other areas of famine include western Nuer of the Upper Nile and eastern Equatoria. The following drought-affected regions are under SPLA control Rumbek Country, eastern Bahr el Ghazal; northern Bahr el Ghazal; Mundri, Western equatoria. Those under government control include: Bentiu, Unity State; Malakal, Upper Nile State, and Juba Town, Bahr el Jebel State. In general, the government controls Bahr el Jebel State, Unity State and Upper Nile State while the SPLA controls Eastern Bahr el Ghazal and Western Equatoria.

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