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Two million people have been killed in the civil war in Sudan since 1982. Seventy percent of Sudan’s total revenue comes from oil, so the struggle is mostly about oil. The fighting is between mixed racial groups in the north led by an Arab minority, and black tribal groups in the south. A peace agreement temporarily ended the civil war in 2005 and established separate autonomous regions in North and South Sudan that would share production until a secession referendum can be held in 2011. The peace agreement has now largely disintegrated. The more recent conflict between North Sudan and its southwestern state of Darfur is complex, but it is also mostly about oil. Rebel groups in Darfur want to create a third state in Sudan, but need the revenue from oil fields within their borders. Many undeveloped areas of Sudan, including much of Darfur and the adjacent state of Abyei, have large probable oil reserves.

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