SUDAN WATCH: Janjaweed women complicit in rape, says Amnesty report

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Janjaweed women complicit in rape, says Amnesty report

What on earth is this? Women involved in systematic dehumanisation of women to inflict fear and force them to leave their communities, humiliating the men in their communities? Can this really be true? Amnesty International, in a report* dated 19 July 2004, says while African women in Darfur were being raped by the Janjaweed militiamen, Arab women stood nearby and sang for joy.

Read more in following excerpt from 20 July 2004 article* in The Guardian by Jeevan Vasagar and Ewen MacAskill published today 10 January 2006 by Assyrian International News Agency:

The songs of the Hakama, or the "Janjaweed women" as the refugees call them, encouraged the atrocities committed by the militiamen. The women singers stirred up racial hatred against black civilians during attacks on villages in Darfur and celebrated the humiliation of their enemies, the human rights group said.

"[They] appear to be the communicators during the attacks. They are reportedly not actively involved in attacks on people, but participate in acts of looting." Amnesty International collected several testimonies mentioning the presence of Hakama while women were raped by the Janjaweed. The report said:"Hakama appear to have directly harassed the women [who were] assaulted, and verbally attacked them."

During an attack on the village of Disa in June last year, Arab women accompanied the attackers and sang songs praising the government and scorning the black villagers.

According to an African chief quoted in the report, the singers said: "The blood of the blacks runs like water, we take their goods and we chase them from our area and our cattle will be in their land. The power of [Sudanese president Omer Hassan] al-Bashir belongs to the Arabs and we will kill you until the end, you blacks, we have killed your God."

The chief said that the Arab women also racially insulted women from the village: "You are gorillas, you are black, and you are badly dressed."

The Janjaweed have abducted women for use as sex slaves, in some cases breaking their limbs to prevent them escaping, as well as carrying out rapes in their home villages, the report said.

The militiamen "are happy when they rape. They sing when they rape and they tell that we are just slaves and that they can do with us how they wish", a 37-year-old victim, identified as A, is quoted as saying in the report, which was based onmore than 100 testimonies from women in the refugee camps in neighbouring Chad.

Pollyanna Truscott, Amnesty International's Darfur crisis coordinator, said the rape was part of a systematic dehumanisation of women. "It is done to inflict fear, to force them to leave their communities. It also humiliates the men in their communities."
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*Sudan Watch Editor's Note 11 January 2006: Thanks to notes I've received from Eugene Oregon of Coalition for Darfur and Eric Jon Magnuson of Passion of the Present the above item now contains links to Amnesty International's report and The Guardian article originally published July 2004. Assyrian International Agency's article is dated 10 January 2006.


Blogger K.M. said...

I think this was orignially reported July 2004:,14658,1264901,00.html

I don't know how it got picked up and reported as new.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006  
Blogger Ingrid said...

Dear Eugene,

Many thanks for that. An hour later Eric emailed me providing links to the reports. I have now included dates and links. Before I published the blog entry yesterday, the AIN article surprised me so much, I googled for a link to the Guardian article and found July 17, 2004 A POLICY OF FORCED EXPULSION by Eric Reeves. Got so absorbed reading the report and posting a link to it, I got sidetracked and forgot the reason I had googled it!

There are so many great reports in all of our archives I am glad the material was reprinted by AIN - especially considering the Sudanese President (in a rare statement) was quoted (yesterday I think) as blaming the rebels. Surely key to peace and quelling the anarchy is disarmement. Question is trust and who disarms first and how? If my memory is correct, back in 2004 when Kofi Annan and Colin Powell visited Khartoum it resulted in deadlines being given to Sudanese government to provide unimpeded access for aid and rein in the Janjaweed. Khartoum insists all along it has no control over the so called Janjaweed which is why I've decided to add links within the two blog entries and leave text as is.

Thanks again. Good to hear from you.

Keep on blogging and reading Sudan Watch!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You'll probably be too gutless to post this in your subjective discretion.

Of course, as to the rapes by men of African women and girls in the Sudan, "their" culturally oppressed Arab women would feel (and sing) "take her, not me" when socially constrained by having to live with the daily terror of such violent bastards ... Most Arab women are essentially sold into marriage and confined to their husbands by virtual if not literal ropes.

Your glee in trying to pin this male rapist gyn-ocide on the "token [female] torturers" generated by global patriarchal misogyny shows your true woman-hating colors.

When will women stop crediting the likes of you with any credibility?

Ask this one question: When have women at any time in history master-minded rape and war? The answer, you know, is never.

Cruelty on a mass scale always comes from men who hate woman embodied as "the other," and you damn well know it. Woman is indeed the other: womankind, because there is no mankind, only mancruel.

I hope there's a Cosmological Force that will wipe out every cruel rapist male on this planet and send them all to oblivion.

Monday, May 01, 2006  

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