Another face of persecution in Sudan – Christians lose their citizenship


Sudan (Photo credit: USAID_IMAGES) is reporting that 2,300 Christians have been evacuated from southern Sudan and that 1,500 more are yet to be rescued.

South Sudan became independent in July 2011 under a 2005 peace agreement which ended decades of civil war but the neighbors have yet to resolve a long list of disputes. Al late as April 2012, the two countries’ armies skirmished over a border oil area, raising fears they would plunge back into a full-scale confrontation, like the civil war Sudan’s north and south fought for more than two decades before a 2005 peace deal.

south-sudan-map2Rebellions in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states, which remained within Sudan’s territory after the July 2011 secession of South Sudan, and also insurgents in the western Sudanese region of Darfur, are still stoking the chronic instability that has plagued Sudan since its independence from Britain in 1956.

This has pitted groups on the periphery of the nation against a central Arab governing political elite in Khartoum whose critics say has marginalized many of Sudan’s peoples.

The Southern Sudanese Christians have lived in the north part of Sudan for decades, but weeks after Southern Sudan seceded, they were stripped of their citizenship and asked to leave.

The Khartoum government reportedly says that that people in Sudan whose parents, grandparents or great-grandparents were born in South Sudan, and those who belong to any Southern ethnic group, „are nationals of that country.”

Barnabas Fund said it fears a massive exodus could trigger a humanitarian emergency at a time when both Sudan and neighboring South Sudan face difficulties.

„Despite the end of the long civil war and independence of South Sudan, Christians in both nations continue to suffer grievously,” explained Patrick Sookhdeo, international director of Barnabas Fund. also reports: „South Sudan is taking the strain as hundreds of thousands of people flee from [Sudan’s] President Omar al-Bashir’s ongoing brutal campaign to Islamise and Arabise Sudan completely,” he told BosNewsLife in a statement.

English: A village in South Sudan

English: A village in South Sudan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It comes as the young state of South Sudan faces a major food crisis as drought has ruined crops, according to the UN World Food Programme (WFP).

Nearly five million people in South Sudan could suffer from food insecurity in 2012, with an estimated one million in severe need, according to UN estimates.

The country’s resources are also strained by the arrival of refugees from clashes in the border states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile, adjacent to newly-independent South Sudan.

Around 185,000 people have fled to South Sudan and Ethiopia to escape the ongoing aerial bombardment of civilians by the Sudan Armed Forces, Barnabas Fund said.

Pray for our brothers and sisters, as they are forced to leave their homes and move elsewhere.


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