2024-04-15 10:48Nyheter

END THE WAR NOW: A Plea for Peace and Humanity In Sudan


There was a lot of death

When the war in Sudan broke out suddenly in the morning of April 15, 2023, Rosa was at her work as a cook in Khartoum. As fighting quickly spread across the city – and across the country – Rosa barely managed to return home to her family that night. “The fighting was terrible.” 

Trapped in their home, Rosa and her four children and three grandchildren could hear the clashes intensify. “We were just stuck at home, even sleeping under our beds sometimes stay safe from the bullets. Things were getting worse and worse. Sometimes people were hit by bullets in their homes – there was a lot of death.”

In June, Rosa and her family fled to the nearby town of Wad Madani, but found the situation there no better. “We didn’t even have a place to stay in the shade, or latrines, or anything. No water. We were going around asking for water from peoples’ homes.” Eventually, they joined a group of displaced people traveling to Port Sudan.


The world’s worst displacement crisis

The war in Sudan has now dragged on for a full year and shows no sign of stopping. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), more than 8 million people have been displaced from their homes. Some have fled to neighboring countries such as Chad, Egypt, and South Sudan. Most – more than six million - are displaced within Sudan, making Sudan the world’s largest displacement crisis. These men, women, and children – just like Rosa and her family – have left everything behind and are struggling to find a safe place to sleep, water to drink, and the very basic necessities of human life. 18 million people are facing acute hunger in the months ahead.

Adjusting to meet new and urgent needs

For LM International’s Sudan program, working in conflict situations is nothing new. For decades LM has worked in war-affected regions in South Sudan, Nuba Mountains, and Darfur. But the scale and scope of the current war is an unprecedented challenge.

The capital Khartoum has continued to be a battleground, forcing the country office to relocate to the city of Port Sudan. Many of our staff have themselves been displaced. And communications and transportation throughout the country have been severely disrupted. However, our field teams all across Sudan have managed to continue providing life-saving help to those suffering from this tragic conflict.

In the regions of Kordofan and Darfur, where thousands of innocent civilians have lost their lives and many more displaced, we have been distributing essential items to thousands of vulnerable households. In some places water sources have been damaged by the fighting and elsewhere the demand for clean water has risen dramatically because of newly displaced people. In response, we have drilled new boreholes, repaired broken hand pumps, and constructed solar-powered water yards. In 2023 more than 180,000 people gained access to clean water through our projects.

One of the greatest tragedies brought about by this conflict is the impact it has on the lives of young children, many of whom suffer long-lasting trauma from their experiences. That is why LM International incorporates psychosocial support for children in our crisis-response wherever possible. With most schools not functioning for over a year, special programs for children have provided these young girls and boys a chance to enjoy a taste of the carefree childhood they have lost.


“Humanity, Accountability, and Commitment”

LM’s life-saving work in Sudan is only possible because of the courageous work of our staff, most of whom have themselves become victims of the conflict. Many of our team members had to flee their homes in Khartoum or elsewhere, unsure what – if anything – they will find when they return.

Nahla was one of the staff who endured those first terrifying weeks of battles in Khartoum and has since been displaced with her family. But she has remained dedicated to her role in supporting the most vulnerable people through the work of LM International: “Just like my other colleagues at LM, I’ve been displaced and experienced the hardest months of my life. It becomes hard to maintain our families and live a ‘normal’ life, and children complicate the equation even more. Despite everything, I am still here, and I can’t see myself doing anything other than humanitarian work. This is driven by a sense of humanity, accountability, and commitment to alleviating the suffering of the affected people.”

Denis Semakula, country director for LM International Sudan, had this to say about his colleagues: “Nahla’s story echoes the resilience and determination of our team members, who have faced unimaginable challenges while striving to provide essential aid to those in desperate need. Let us raise our voices as one and demand an end to the war, so that they may rebuild their lives and their country in peace.”

A place of refuge in Port Sudan

Port Sudan, one of the few cities untouched by fighting, has become a temporary home for tens of thousands of Sudanese. Some stay with relatives and others who have the means find some place to rent. But many, like Rosa and her family, have no idea where they will stay when they arrive. They usually find their way to one of the dozens of small gathering points scattered throughout the city, where basic housing and services are offered.

Rosa is at the gathering point, a small collection of tents now housing 68 families, more than 200 people. Rosa’s grandchildren play with others in a tent set up as a temporary child-friendly space. They seem happy to be together, and maybe they are beginning to feel that this place is home.

 Services provided by LM and other organizations have provided for some of their most basic needs. In 2023 we repaired the water truck which is used to bring water to this site, and covered the costs of several months of water supply. Victoria, a volunteer who helps to manage this site, commented, “When there’s water, there’s no problem - people can drink and cook and bathe and wash their things and do everything they need to do. But when there’s no water, people really suffer.”

As Sudan enters a second full year of devastating war, the needs are greater than ever. LM International will continue to do all we can to expand our reach, alleviate suffering, and provide life-saving support to those who need it most.

As Sudan enters a second full year of devastating war, the needs are greater than ever. LM International will continue to do all we can to expand our reach, alleviate suffering, and provide life-saving support to those who need it most.

 “The war in Sudan must end now to stop the suffering of millions and prevent further loss of life. Urgent action is required from all parties involved to achieve lasting peace and stability in Sudan and the entire region.” - Denis Semakula, LM Sudan Country Director.





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