Let me go and show you something in the caves. This is the last bag of food for the month. This one will not even last us 10 days. And if it finishes the kids will have nothing to eat. This is everything we own. They instituted a blockade on the Nuba Mountains and 80% of the population here have to survive on a single ration a day.
The destruction in the region is what forced us to escape to the caves. A woman Mariam Teia recounts how her husband, a civilian, was shot when the government troops attacked their village. The government captured the rest of her family members and took them captive. A woman lived in the caves describe the harrowing experience of having to live so inhumanely, while in the distance gunfire rings.
A student AbduRahman describes, “I had 5 children and I lost 3 of them to the war”. When the government army attacked, they gathered whatever little they could if they lucky to escape with their lives. Most of the people left everything behind to escape and only to return and discover nothing left. Homes destroyed, properties burned, animals burnt alive, and farms set alight. In the case of our family, we spent 5 days inside the cave unsheltered, unsheltered, with nothing, sleep or cover with, no food to eat or water to drink, and unable to step foot outside as the government and our troops exchanged fire. On the 6th day, we escaped from the caves because the government troops were unaware of our position.
The SPLM-A soldiers took us to safety in Tabanya. An elderly lady describes going without anything to eat, with all the food destroyed she resorted to foraging on leaves and grass just to survive. She and the family hadn’t eaten real food in over two months. I lost so many people to hunger, “not even the sickness”. How miserable! They come and kill the children with bombs, we drink muddy water at times our water sources are poisoned. You are unable to feed your children or your elderly parents.
This is an incredibly painful way to live. Despite surviving without food, water, medical care or basic amenities, this is our land. For the government to come and kill your brother, sister, friend, parents, I mean for the government to kills its own people, its unacceptable to me. I don’t know where to place my heart.
I am stuck in the middle, unable to leave my elderly parents, my children or my land, and yet I understand the need to find a place of safety and peace. We feel forgotten, we want to appeal to the international community to come to our rescue.