Amira's Escape

Published on 20 October 2023 at 20:00

I got out of Sudan in July of 2023. I left due to the fighting, due to the gunfire. Our home was shot up by bullets and torn to shreds. An airplane dropped a missile on our home. I left because the missile attacks were getting more frequent, and more aggressive (bigger, stronger). I left to save my life. 

On the streets, they started threatening us with weapons. I was threatened. I was immediately shaken, and my neighbors could see it in my new demeanor. They told me to get out by any means. They encouraged me to leave while I could if I could, and by any means. I didn't have the means; I didn't have money. Thankfully, I was gifted a bus ticket to head east and eventually north, to Egypt. 


I got on the bus. While on the bus the RSF stopped us. They threatened with knives, rifles, batons, and bare hands. They took what little money any of us had. Even the driver was left with empty pockets and left in shock from being held at gunpoint. They repeated "We'll kill you here and now" and we'll kill you on this bus, we'll kill every one of you." We were instructed not to get off the bus or great, vivid, and disgustingly violent harm would come to us. God protected us in that moment.  


The bus started moving again, we were stopped once more by the militia! This time a different gang from the same family of lost souls. They demanded we get off the bus and surrender our belongings. Each individual pleading and explaining that we had nothing left to give. We made this journey with nothing but the clothes on our backs and a prayer of hope. We were only there by the graciousness of our neighbors and the kindness of strangers. They let us go.

We grew closer to the Sudanese/Egyptian border and as if two stops weren’t enough, a third took place. Again, we were boarded and this time we were “going nowhere”; not ahead nor back. They demanded that no one say a word. It was completely silent. There was an eerie stillness. “You will die here in Sudan.” They pulled their weapons and threatened to beat us. This intimidating strategy worked. They left when they felt satisfied in the terror they caused. 

Three days we traveled until thankfully reaching Arjin [the border of Sudan and Egypt]. 

We arrive in Cairo. We stay with hosts that met us at the border. We have no money. We are grateful for the volunteers that take us in. I am so very thankful, but I am depressed. I didn’t know what to expect. Here, we are harassed. Physically, we are safe now, but emotionally, not only are we tormented by the traumas of war, but of an overwhelmed people. Their words are loud. “We don’t want you here. You’re overcrowding our country.” 

Even our host is feeling the strain of our presence. We have been here for some time and are utilizing their resources. We can’t work so we don’t have income. We don’t have clothing or hygiene products. We don’t have food. We only have what this generous family can manage to share. Regardless of the treatment here, I thank God. I am thankful we got out. I am thankful we have all that we have. I am thankful that I am alive. 

Did you know anyone on the bus, or did you get on it alone?

“It was chaos. People from all different regions and states were on that bus looking to get out of the war’s path.”


How did you discover a war had erupted? Can you walk me through that day?

We didn’t know such violence was coming. We woke to the sound of gunfire and missiles going off. We asked around and finally got news that there was a war going on between the paramilitary RSF and the Sudanese Armed Forces. We could feel the rattling of dropped bombs and hear the screams of dying children. We saw shootings and were shot towards. Both sides fighting for presidency; for leadership. We don’t know who will rule. There will be nothing and no one left of Sudan by the time it’s settled. Neither one should govern. 


What was it life before you left Sudan?

“Violent and Expensive. One day we’d eat and the next we couldn’t. We’d eat every other day. You couldn’t find basic foods. The buildings were demolished. The stores shut down. The buildings burned. Everything burned. It is much worse now.”


Have you lost anybody in the war?

“I know a lot of people that died; our neighbor, a cousin, a friend. They all died. My brother’s friend died. He was run down on the street and run over several times. He was just going to get gasoline and for no reason, except out of gross ego and sadistic pride, that boy died. They didn’t take his money or his belongings. I have a friend who was killed in front of his children. It was the RSF. They wear specific clothing, headwear and covered faces. Now they cover their faces, they didn’t before.” 


Is there anything you want to share with the world?”

“Sudan doesn’t have medical care. They bombed the hospitals. They bombed the pharmacies. There is no medicine for the sick. They bombed the markets and cut off distribution areas. There is no way for people to get food.”


How can we help you?  

“Get me out of Egypt. Get me out. I want to go to my sister. I don't want to go to Sudan. I will NEVER go back to Sudan.”


Does that make you sad?”

I don’t like Sudan. I’m sad that we are dragged out into the streets, that we are tortured, threatened, and tormented. Sudan has no safety, no security, no honour. It’s all gone. They break into homes, torment people, take girls… There is no honour.”








Interviewed by: Sitreen Sinnette

Translated in part by: Suaad Elsharief


Add comment


There are no comments yet.