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After having attended a primary school under the British administration, John Garang made his secondary studies in Tanzania before studying economics at Grinnell College in Iowa (United States). In 1970, he joined the rebel movement Anyanya against the Khartoum regime. After the signing of a peace agreement in Addis Ababa in 1972, it is integrated into the Sudanese army. In September 1983, General Yaafar al-Numeiry imposed Islamic law on the whole of Sudan. John Garang then founded the People’s Liberation Army of Sudan (SPLA) which begins with a war against the central power. Despite the split of its movement in 1991, John Garang maintained the rebellion against the Islamist regime of General Omar al-Báshir, installed in Khartoum in 1989. His movement benefited from pressures from the US administration on the Sudanese government after the election of George W. Bush.
Following a ceasefire in October 2002, some peace agreements were signed between the Arab and Islamic government of Khartoum and the animistic and Christian rebels of the SPLA on January 9, 2005. The Government is represented by the Vice President Ali Osman Taha and the SPLA by John Garang, his historical boss.
Garang was sworn in as vice-president of Sudan on July 9, becoming the second most powerful person in the country after signing with President Omar al-Báshir a distribution of powers. However, Garang dies on July 31, 2005, with 13 other people, in a helicopter crash returning from a meeting in Kampala with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni. Garang was traveling in a Ugandan presidential helicopter.
His burials in Juba were preceded by violent riots, particularly in Khartoum, killing 110 people and over 1,600 arrests.
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