(Reuters) - The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) prosecutor on Monday charged Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, with genocide and crimes against humanity in Darfur.
Below is a chronology of some major events in the conflict in western Sudan:
February 2003 - Two rebel groups rise up, saying government neglects arid region and arms Arab militia against civilians.
April 8, 2004 - Government, Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) and Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) rebels agree ceasefire, later agreeing it should be monitored by foreign forces.
May 5, 2006 - Sudan’s government and SLA sign new peace deal. Rival SLA faction and the smaller JEM reject the deal.
August 31 - U.N. Security Council votes to create a U.N. peacekeeping force of 26,000 U.N. troops and police in Darfur, but Sudan rejects the idea of foreign troops.
February 27, 2007 - International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor names first two war crimes suspects in Darfur. Sudan says the ICC has no jurisdiction and rejects arrest warrants.
May 29 - U.S. President George W. Bush imposes new U.S. sanctions on Sudan and asks for support for an international arms embargo to end what he calls genocide in Darfur.
Aug 1 - The U.N. Security Council authorizes 26,000 troops and police for Darfur’s hybrid mission and approves the use of force to protect civilians.
Oct 27 - Darfur peace talks open in Libya and the government declares an immediate unilateral ceasefire, but key rebel groups are absent.
February 3, 2008 - Chad’s President Idriss Deby survives attack on capital by rebels he says were backed by Sudan. Khartoum denies this.
May 5 - Sudanese government bombs hit primary school and market place in Darfur, killing at least 13 people in latest upsurge of violence.
May 10 - Fighting inside Khartoum. Darfur rebels say they have entered the city.
May 11 - The last of the Darfur rebel forces leave Sudan’s capital after unprecedented battles in the Khartoum suburb of Omdurman.
-- Sudan accuses Chad of backing the rebels and cuts diplomatic relations. Chad denies involvement.
May 12 - JEM leader Khalil Ibrahim says he will keep launching attacks until President Bashir’s government falls.
May 21 - Up to 60 heavily armed men ambush and take weapons from Nigerian troops of the joint U.N./African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) close to the capital of West Darfur, El Geneina.
May 29 - A Ugandan officer working for UNAMID is found dead in the North Darfur capital of El Fasher. The Ugandan was the first peacekeeper killed since UNAMID troops arrived.
June 5 - Luis Moreno-Ocampo, ICC prosecutor says he will seek new indictments against top officials, accusing Sudan’s “entire state apparatus” of involvement in crimes in Darfur.
June 30 - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the AU chairperson appoint Djibril Yipene Bassole, Burkina Faso’s foreign minister, as Darfur mediator.
July 8 - Darfur militiamen ambush and kill seven members of UNAMID and wound 22 others in North Darfur. Darfur’s main rebel groups deny any involvement.
July 13 - Thousands of protesters chant anti-American slogans as they rally in Khartoum to protest against a potential arrest warrant against the president.
July 14 - Moreno-Ocampo asks the ICC for an arrest warrant for Bashir on crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur.
-- Sudan says it does not recognize the ICC indictment but pledges to continue with peace moves in Darfur.