Protesters Massacred in Sudan by Military Regime
On June 3, 2019, over 100 Sudanese protesters are reported to have been shot dead by troops in Sudan’s military (1,2,3). Two months prior on April 11, 2019, the Sudanese people with military support overthrew then President Omar al-Bashir, who had ruled for three decades, in a coup d’etat, leading to the temporary installment of a military regime during the transition period to a new government (4). Sudan had been at civil war for years leading up to this coup, and “[b]etween 2014 and 2018, the United States provided approximately $3.76 billion dollars in humanitarian aid to South Sudan and refugees in neighboring countries… [to address the] threat from terrorism and other violent conflicts across the region” (5). In April 2014 President Barack Obama declared a national emergency as the Sudan Civil War threatened “widespread violence and atrocities, human rights abuses, recruitment and use of child soldiers, attacks on peacekeepers, and obstruction of humanitarian operations, [and posed] an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States” (6); a week before the coup d’etat this year, President Trump continued this national emergency (7). The people of Sudan, although their president had been overthrown, remained unhappy with this transient military rule, continuing protests until last week when they were forced to cease by lethal military intervention (8,9). Yesterday, June 11, 2019, the U.S. State Department announced “Ambassador Donald Booth as Special Envoy for Sudan [to] lead U.S. efforts to support a political solution to the current crisis that reflects the will of the Sudanese people” (10).