Al Jazeera Close Up

How I rescue people caught in Sudan’s war | Close Up

On the first day of Sudan’s war, Osham felt despair about where his country was heading.

But as thousands of people began fleeing into the eastern city of Port Sudan, more than 500 miles away from the battle of Khartoum, it was clear to him that he had to help those displaced by the conflict.

“Port Sudan is like a diamond. It’s the only gateway for medicine, aid and travel outside of Sudan,” Osham says as he walks through the streets of the city in search of empty buildings where those fleeing the war might be able to stay. “We don’t want anyone to be homeless or without access to food because in the end we are all Sudanese.”

Since fighting broke out in Khartoum two months ago between the country’s army and a paramilitary group known as the Rapid Support Forces, over 1 million people have been internally displaced. Among those who have fled their homes, many have found refuge in Port Sudan, a major sea port along the Red Sea coast that has become one of the main routes out of the country.

As the international community grapples with diplomatic solutions and aid organizations shut down their operations, citizen solidarity on the ground and online has emerged to transform Port Sudan into a safe haven for people from all over the country. Residents like Osham and volunteers at the Red Sea Emergency Initiative are working tirelessly to help those stuck in Khartoum escape the war, as well as converting empty spaces such as classrooms into makeshift shelters and setting up community kitchens and temporary medical clinics.

“War is a curse. Without peace there is no life. … We will keep doing everything we can to help our brothers.” Osham says.

As the war continues to tear families apart, our film shines a light on the lives and motivations of people coming together in the face of tragedy.





PRODUCER: Antonia Perello


CINEMATOGRAPHER: Ahmed Mohamed Satti

DRONE OPERATOR: Satti Mohamed Satti

EDITORS: Ahmed Mohamed Satti, Antonia Perello, Catherine Hallinan

SENIOR EDITOR: Donald Cameron