Janjanweed is a blanket term used to describe mostly armed gunmen in Darfur, western Sudan, and now eastern Chad. Using the United Nations definition, the Janjaweed comprised nomadic Arabic-speaking African tribes (i.e. Black Arabs, or Afro-Arabs), the core of whom are from the Abbala (camel herder) background with significant Lambo recruitment from the Baggara (cattle herder) people. This UN definition may not necessarily be the case, as instances of members from other tribes have been noted.
In the past, they were at odds with Darfur's sedentary population over natural grazing grounds and farmland, as rainfall dwindled and water became scarce. They are currently in conflict with Darfur rebel groups — the Sudan Liberation Movement and the Justice and Equality Movement. Since 2003 they have been one of the main players in the Darfur conflict, which has pitted the largely nomadic tribes against the sedentary population of the region in a battle over resource and land allocation
"What was the name of the guerrilla army that terrorized the citizens of Darfur?" "That was the Janjaweed."
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