Classmate Abraham Nhial, serving as Bishop in Abyei, Sudan, asks for our prayers. Article quoted from the website of the Anglican Church in North America.
South Sudan Under Siege Days Before Gaining Independence
Northern Sudanese attacks on the southern region of Sudan have erupted as the South prepares to secede from Africa’s largest country in July.
The town of Abyei and the neighboring region of South Kordofan in Southern Sudan have been devastated with violence and human rights violations. News reports state that some 140,000 people have fled due to recent clashes.
Nearly 99% of Southern Sudanese voters opted for independence in hopes of ending two decades of north-south conflict that has left some 1.5 million people dead, but the transition has come with much turmoil.
Amid the looting, destruction, bombings and shootings, there are now reports of ethnic cleansing to deter pro-southern groups.
Bishop Abraham Nhial leads the Anglican Diocese of Aweil in Abyei, Sudan. He sends the following message to the Anglican Church in North America family:
“I ask you all to remember in your prayers and advocacy for our brothers and sisters of Abyei who are still missing, those in the bush, and those on the streets in Southern Sudan towns. As always, your prayers are needed to people of Abyei and the world.”
The Rev. Stephen Muo, Secretary of the Diocese of Aweil, offered the following recount of what has happened in the town of Abyei:
“The whole town was completely set on fire [by Sudanese forces]. All the civilians are now down on streets and in bushes, with no food, no shelters, no water and no medical assistant. Majority are still under the trees with children, sick people and elderly people. Aweil Diocese is left with no choices but raise the voice of voiceless for relief assistant.
“Aweil Diocese is calling for urgent support for the civilians who are now lying on the ground without medical attention, shelters, food and water. People with communicable diseases are forced to sleep together with healthy people and this could spread the effect of disease [to] all displaced people if no urgent humanitarian relief intervention reaches them.”
Photo Caption: Northern forces seized the disputed town of Abyei last month, raising fears of a new north-south war. Credit: AFP