While most of the western world has been focused on American politics, the NBA playoffs, and the start of summer, a major crisis has been brewing in Sudan. Yet despite the bloodshed (with death tolls reportedly in the hundreds), little attention has been given to this tragedy- until now. On Tuesday, Rihanna shared the following message with her millions of followers: “They’re shooting people’s houses, raping women, burning bodies, throwing them in the Nile like vermin, tormenting people, urinating on them, making them drink sewage water, terrorizing the streets, and stopping Muslims from going to eid prayer. There is an Internet blackout! Please share. Raise awareness.”
The social media message, which has been shared hundreds of times, are in regard to the embattled African country’s ongoing political turmoil and civil war.
The crisis began in December when Sudanese citizens held rallies to protest rising food costs, fuel shortages, women’s rights, and the actions of Sudanese President, Omar al-Bashir, who despite being accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity, had been in power since 1989.
In April, al-Bashir was arrested and removed from power and the military took temporary control over the nation’s already shaky political system. However, the power void left many groups fighting for power and peaceful protests turned into civil disobedience, which then turned into chaos and violence.
According to CNN, “Soldiers and paramilitary groups earlier this month opened fire on a pro-democracy sit-in in Khartoum, leaving at least 118 people dead, the Central Committee of SudanDoctors said. The massacre horrified human rights activists and governments worldwide. According to the United Nations, Sudan is sliding into a “human rights abyss.”
In addition to regularly raising awareness about important causes, Rihanna is also involved with numerous charities that serve the most impoverished parts of Africa including UNICEF, the Red Cross, Save the Children, and the Clara Lionel Foundation. Save the Children is currently operating in Sudan. For more information as to how you can help, visit https://www.savethechildren.org/us/what-we-do/where-we-work/africa/sudan.