Editor's Note: This blog was written by Enough Project intern Naafeh Dhillon.
In the past week, Sudanese activists have launched two dynamic campaigns that draw attention to their government's ongoing crimes and call on the international community to respond with decisive action. Sudan Democracy First Group, a civil society organization dedicated to democratic transformation in Sudan, marked the third anniversary of the resumption of civil war in Blue Nile and the Nuba Mountains with a public art campaign highlighting the government's ongoing aerial bombardment of both areas. In a complementary effort, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies, a human rights group based in Sudan, launched its own campaign calling for stronger human rights monitoring in the country. Both efforts showcase the energy and commitment of Sudanese activists to challenging their government's abuses. The Enough Project stands in solidarity with these brave activists and fully supports their call for change.
The Sudan Democracy First Group (SDFG) campaign uses art as a tool for both resistance and resilience. In conjunction with Sudanese-American artist Khalid Kodi, the group organized a series of workshops in war-affected areas of South Kordofan in mid-July 2014. In Kauda, as part of the workshop, people held anti-bombardment signs while standing in front of schools, churches and mosques that had been attacked by government forces. In Yida, the refugees were encouraged and assisted in using recycled and found-objects to produce their art. The workshops allowed men, women and children of all ages to use art to express their dreams, fears and concerns. SDFG plans to use the images and posters created in the Nuba mountains for a media campaign to highlight the plight of the affected civilian population. In the coming weeks, the group will release a series of posters, videos, and drawings done by children affected by the conflict, a booklet depicting the narratives of female victims, and briefing papers, all of which document the severity of the sufferings of the victims of this conflict. Along with eleven other Sudanese activist groups, SDFG issued a statement calling for " an international independent investigation into the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity, including the systematic bombing of civilians, in Nuba Mountains/South Kordofan and Blue Nile."
In a complementary effort, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) and its partners are running a campaign on Twitter to draw attention to human rights violations in Sudan and ask the UN Human Rights Council to expand international human rights monitoring efforts. The campaign, which will run between Monday 15 September and Friday 19 September, demands that the Council condemn the government's crimes committed throughout the country and appoint a UN expert to monitor and investigate human rights abuses and publicly report on findings. ACJPS argues that there is not enough information getting out about the reality on the ground. Their campaign focuses on the Human Rights Council, which will be meeting in Geneva until September 26. Enough will be joining the Twitter campaign by sharing the following messages:
- UN #HRC27 must adopt strong #Sudan resolution, appoint independent expert to monitor/report violations in all country http://bit.ly/1ur9fJ2
- #UN expert reports poor prisons conditions in Darfur #Sudan at #HRC27. 3 detainees died due to poor conditions in Port Sudan last month http://bit.ly/1qK6125 via @AfricanCentre
- #Sudan those behind unlawful killings and torture of protesters must be brought to justice #HRC27 http://bit.ly/1uzbdGq via @AfricanCentre
Photo credit: Sudan Democracy First Group (SDFG).