On April 19, 2023, as a result of the breakdown of a 24-hour ceasefire, individuals are evacuating their communities due to clashes between the military and paramilitary forces in Khartoum. (Photo by – / AFP)

Ghinwa Akiki

We heard the gunfire and the fighting from our home. It was terrifying but fortunately, we managed to escape at midnight and reach a safer place.” An ABTS alumni shared the frightful experience he had with his family.

On that day, the people of Sudan were plunged into chaos and fear as clashes erupted in the capital, Khartoum between two main factions: the armed forces led by Sudan’s interim president General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) under Vice-President General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as Hemedti.

Following Omar Al-Bashir’s overthrow in 2019 by a military coup after a year of popular protests, both men promised to ensure a peaceful transition to a civilian-led democratic government. Clashes between the two factions started when the efforts to establish a civilian government faltered. Furthermore, regional interventions in the conflict, unstable borders with neighbouring countries complicate the situation even further.

The clashes between the two factions have left civilians caught in the crossfire, with their lives turned upside down in an instant. The situation is heart-breaking and deeply concerning, with reports of looting, burning of houses, and attacks on healthcare facilities, resulting in difficulties for people seeking essential care. Several airlines have suspended flights to the area, and neighbouring Chad has closed its border after it received between 10,000 and 20,000 Sudanese refugees as reported by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). Many schools are on lockdown, and roads and bridges have been closed. According to the UN, gender-based violence is also a major concern, putting millions of women and girls at risk.

Power outages have left people in darkness and the lack of access to basic necessities like fuel, food, water, and medicine has left them helpless.

Moreover, many of our ABTS students and alumni families have been affected, with some having to evacuate their homes for safety. Others remain in place facing electricity and water shortages and limited Internet access.

The Church in Sudan Needs Our Prayers!

During his interview on a news program, Pastor Hafez, an ABTS alumni, stated that all citizens were exhausted and frightened due to the unexpected outbreak of war, resulting in a very challenging humanitarian situation. He also shared about the fire that broke out at their church causing damages. However, the fire was miraculously extinguished and no one was harmed. While he and his family are currently safe, they are suffering from electricity and water shortages like most of those impacted by the clashes.

Our students and alumni families in Sudan are requesting prayers for protection and haven for those affected by the conflict, for justice and healing for their nation.

Pray for Sudan

We urge you to pray for our brothers and sisters in Sudan during these difficult times and ask for God’s merciful and gracious intervention so that peace would reign in the country.

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