The residents of Abyei, the largest town of the contested border region between north and south Sudan, have deserted their homes in search of safety after the northern government took the town by force this weekend. The seizure of the town follows an ambush by a southern group on a convoy of northern forces who were withdrawing from the town under U.N. escort. According to U.N. deputy spokesperson Hua Jiang, 15 Sudanese army tanks rolled into the town on Saturday evening. Heavy shelling ensued, and a mortar was fired on the U.N. compound in the area, wounding two peacekeepers.
If you've been following developments in Darfur, then you know the situation is dire. Last month, the U.N. reported that fighting between the Sudanese army and an obscure rebel faction rendered the Jebel Marra region in southern Darfur inaccessible to humanitarian aid, cutting off some 100,000 Darfuris who had relied on aid agencies for food, water, and medical care.
The Devil Came on Horseback: Bearing Witness to the Genocide in Darfur By Brian Steidle and Gretchen Steidle Wallace (PublicAffairs, 237 pp., $14.95) War in Darfur and the Search for Peace Edited by Alex de Waal (Global Equity Initiative, Harvard University and Justice Africa, 431 pp., $24.95) Darfur's Sorrow: A History of Destruction and Genocide By M.W. Daly (Cambridge University Press, 368 pp., $22.99) Darfur: The Long Road to Disaster By J. Millard Burr and Robert O.