Gaza war is making world ‘look away’ from horror in Africa, says furious Sudanese journalist

An estimated 8 million people have been displaced and 15,000 killed in the Sudanese civil war


Sudanese forces patrol a district in Gedaref city in eastern Sudan on April 3, 2024 (Photo by EBRAHIM HAMID/AFP via Getty Images)

A Sudanese journalist has written of her fury that the world is “looking away” from the horrendous war in her country because attention is being diverted to Gaza. 

Writing for the BBC, Zeinab Mohammed Salih said there was currently “no international pressure” on the two sides to stop the bloody conflict, which has so far displaced eight million people, killed around 15,000 and left 33,000 injured.

"International attention is focused on Gaza and before that it was on Ukraine," she wrote. “Without pressure, I cannot see an end.”

The core of the conflict, which broke out on April 15 2023, is a power struggle between the regular army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) paramilitary group. 

Last year, more than 10,000 were killed in just one city, according to the UN. The ethnically motivated mass killings were carried out by the RSF and allied Arab militia in Geneina, the capital of West Darfur state.

When war began in April last year, Salih stayed with her family in Omdurman while others fled the city, believing help would arrive.

“We were hoping that the war would end soon, believing that maybe the international community would intervene to stop this madness, but the suffering of the Sudanese people was seemingly ignored,” she told the BBC.

Salih said she felt “sad and angry” at the lack of international support shown to Sudan, especially in comparison to other conflicts. “I have been trying to tell our story but it feels that the world is looking away,” she said.

Since war broke out, Salih’s nights have been disturbed by the sound of airstrikes hitting the capital of North Darfur. She has heard accounts of sexual violence, and has watched the population struggle with starvation. Nearly 18 million people in Sudan are facing acute food insecurity, according to the UN's World Food Programme (WFP)

“It is heart-breaking seeing my country fall apart, and there is a danger that things could get worse, with ordinary people being armed by both sides,” she wrote.

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