A History of Conflict
Intermittent small scale conflict between farmers and nomads. Farmer's crops would often be destroyed by camels and cattle belonging to nomads migrating south in search of water and grazing land. Traditional leaders on both sides would normally resolve disagreements.
Severe drought strikes the region, increasing competition over dwindling resources.
Automatic weapons become easily available in Darfur after civil war in neighbouring Chad, and conflicts become bloodier.
Turmoil in Darfur
Emergence of SLA and JEM rebel movements in Darfur, who begin to campaign against the marginalisation of the region.
March - April 2003
SLA launch surprise attacks on towns in northern Darfur.
Refugees begin arriving in eastern Chad to escape the conflict. Large numbers of civilians flee their homes.
The SLA and the Government reach a fragile ceasefire agreement hosted in Chad.
Refugee numbers in Chad reach 70,000. UN agencies estimate at least 500,000 people in Darfur need humanitarian aid.
Ceasefire agreement completely breaks down.
Army moves to quell rebel uprising in western Darfur; more than 100,000 people seek refuge in neighbouring Chad.
IR staff begin preparations for emergency intervention as nearly 41,000 people have by now fled their homes for camps in Darfur, in addition to the 100,000 refugees in Chad.
Number of people living in camps increases dramatically. IR provides building materials for 350 families, and distributes food and 1,400 blankets.
8 April 2004
Khartoum and the rebel groups sign a humanitarian ceasefire agreement.
Senior UN officials describe the Darfur situation as one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world. The number of displaced is now estimated to be more than one million with another 120,000 refugees in Chad.
IR distributes shelter kits, blankets, sleeping mats and household utensils to 921 families, and food to 18,000.
The rainy season begins, hampering the delivery of humanitarian relief. IR takes over the management of the Al-Riyadh camp
IR registers residents of Al-Riyadh camp to ensure each family has food tokens, and receives shelter materials, blankets, water containers and soap for distribution to camp residents.
IR opens a new camp, Kerinding II, to house families that had taken up residence in local schools. Islamic Relief distributes aid to over 8,000 residents of Al-Riyadh camp.
Adeel Jafferi visits Darfur to take photographs and write a diary of his experiences.
Islamic Relief relocates 3000 people from the Mustaqbal, Zahara and Thoura schools to Keringding II.
Islamic Relief's Primary Health Care Clinic is opened in Kerinding II to families living in the camp.
Masakhane school opens its doors to 800 children. The school, consisting of 16 classrooms made with traditional shelters and tents, is staffed by more than 20 teachers.