June 24, 2014

VIDEO. Sudanese protest in London England

Members of the Beja Congress participated in a protest demonstration outside the Sudanese Embassy in London England on Saturday, June 21, 2014.

The Beja Congress has joined other groups in marginalized areas like the Nuba Mountains and Darfur, in order to pressure the central government in Khartoum to provide greater peace and security in the country of Sudan.

The protesters would like to have repressive laws abolished. The signs they carry call for hospitals not to be sold. They want no more war in Darfur, and a stop to aerial bombardment. Violence against women needs to be stopped. Genocide in the Nuba mountains needs to be stopped.

The Beja Congress banner (at 3.39) reads "Beja Congress of Easter Sudan for Eternal Peace... Democracy... Equality... Development."


June 6, 2014

Money for Tokar delta agriculture

Sudanese president Omer al-Bashir on Wednesday witnessed the signing of new agreements worth $100 million with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to fund three projects.

The projects include $50 million to finance the Delta Toker agricultural project as part of its previous pledges to the Eastern Sudan Reconstruction and Development Fund.

Also, there is $50 million for construction of an electricity carrier line between Babanousa and the third agreement deals with technical funding for the institutions for employment of youths.

Sudan's helped start the IDB which is currently celebrating its 40th anniversary. Sudan was the first country to contribute to the establishment of the bank.

The bank has extended $1.5 billion for construction of dams and other infrastructure projects in Sudan on recent years.

From All Africa

June 4, 2014

Freedom of religion in Sudan - a dilemma

On 15 May, a Khartoum court sentenced 27-year old Mariam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag to death for apostasy for the supposed crime of converting to Christianity. The sentence was handed down after Ms. Ishag — who was pregnant at the time and has since given birth in prison – refused to recant her faith.

Sadly, her case represents a pattern of violations of fundamental religious freedoms in Sudan, which instituted the death penalty for apostasy in 1991. This is the case in only three other African countries: Nigeria (in some northern states), Mauritania and Somalia.

Such religious intolerance in Sudan is an oxymoron, as the country, even with the loss of South Sudan, still remains one of the most diverse countries in Africa.

Sudan is home to sizable minorities with distinct cultural heritages and languages; as well as religious minorities, including Christians of various denominations, and followers of traditional African religions.

But since 1989, following the Islamist–sponsored military coup led by President Omar al-Bashir, the Government has treated Islam as the official state religion, instilling in the country’s laws, institutions and policies.

Since, thousands of non-Muslims have experienced discrimination at the hands of the state. Human rights groups have documented numerous cases of state-sponsored discrimination, including the destruction or confiscation of churches. Thousands of non-Muslims have also been forced to convert to Islam, priests and church leaders have been persecuted, and thousands of Christians punished according to Sharia law.

Yet, Christianity boasts a long and rich history in northern Africa, including northern Sudan, dating back to the first century.

Read the entire opinion piece.

Many followup stories are identified here.

May 30, 2014

New road between Egypt and Sudan to open


And who will ride the ferries across Lake Nassar? And will they be missed?

One motorcyle traveller says he would be Waiting 7-8 hours and sailing on the ferry from Aswan to for another 17-18 hours. Driving would have taken max. 5 hours.

Khartoum — The Egyptian minister of Commerce, Industry and investments Munir Fakhri Abdel-Nur announced the land crossings between with Sudan will be opened over the next few days to facilitate the flow of trade between the two countries as well as central Africa and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).

Egyptian minister of Trade, Investment and Industry Munir Fakhri Abdel-Nur

According to Egyptian news agency (MENA), Abdel-Nur made the revelation at the opening ceremony of the workshop organized by the trade agreement sector at his ministry and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on trade facilitation through the development of ports and border crossings management.

The minister underscored the importance of strengthening the performance of trade and transport corridors between Arab countries to increase the flow of goods and people across borders and to help achieve regional economic integration.

He also stressed the need to eliminate current obstacles and challenges that hampers the development of inter-Arab trade which Abdel-Nur Said accounts for only 10% of the total regional trade.
Observers say that the inauguration of border crossings is held up by disagreements over the Halayeb region which both countries claim.


May 28, 2014

Suakin port - workers strike

Last Saturday (May 26) workers and employees of the Containers Transportation Department of the Southern Port in Port Sudan entered an open-end strike protesting their low salaries, temporary contracts and the payment of delayed allowances. The strike immediately led to an accumulation of containers on the pavements of the Southern Port.