Catholic aid workers confront humanitarian crisis in Sudan as world looks away

By Kevin Clarke, 24 April 2024
Dignity kits are distributed by the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) in Sudan. Image: CAFOD/Caritas Australia/Supplied


The human suffering in Gaza, where close to 34,000 people have been killed since Hamas provoked a renewed conflict with Israel in October, has been grimly documented each day in global media. But in Sudan, the dying continued into its second year this week without nearly as much attention—even though the scale of Sudan’s agony makes it perhaps the worst humanitarian crisis in Africa.

Almost 15,000 people have been killed since fighting began between two competing military groups last year, a figure that is almost certainly an underestimate, according to New York-based Human Rights Watch. H.R.W. reports that Sudan now represents the world’s largest internal displacement crisis, with more than six million uprooted from their homes and communities inside Sudan’s borders.

“The world is forgetting about the people of Sudan,” United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres told reporters after the Security Council met to discuss the Sudan crisis on April 15. He described the conflict between the national army and a formidable paramilitary militia as “a war being waged on the Sudanese people.”

“The only path out of this horror is a political solution,” the secretary-general said. “At this critical moment, in addition to global support for aid, we need a concerted global push for a ceasefire in Sudan followed by a comprehensive peace process.”

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Kevin Clarke is America’s chief correspondent and the author of Oscar Romero: Love Must Win Out (Liturgical Press).

With thanks to America and Kevin Clarke, where this article originally appeared.


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