A continent away, eastern Iowa Sudanese group protests home country violence

A protester speaks at a rally in Iowa City on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.
A protester speaks at a rally in Iowa City on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.(Brian Tabick/KCRG)
Published: Oct. 31, 2021 at 11:59 AM CDT
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - More than 100 Eastern Iowa residents joined in on the national protests called the “March of Millions” on Saturday in Iowa City to stand up against the Sudanese government.

“The military extremists that followed Bashir came back to power,” Fatima E Saeeb, one of the Sudanese protesters, said. “They don’t care. They are just killing people.”

Saeeb moved to Iowa in 2002 to be with her family and escape threats and violence from the government. 20 years later, she said nothing has changed.

“I watched them burn down the tree in my village,” Saeeb said. “We need someone to stop this because innocent people have been gunned down.”

Sudanese General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan ordered the arrest of the prime minister, top civilian leaders, and dissolved the civilian-military, which was put in place to help navigate change after the country’s long-time dictator Omar al-Bashir was ousted.

“It’s still going on because this current government was an extension of the previous government,” Badri Kuku, a member of the group Sudanese Americans in Iowa City, said. ”They are carrying out the same policies and same kind of oppression as the former government.”

Kuku left Sudan 20 years ago for the same reason as Saeeb: safety. He hopes the United States government sees what’s going on and lends its support.

“I hope all of the United States citizens, Congress, and President Joe Biden send a sufficient message to the government of Sudan,” Kuku said.

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