The Benefits of Hosting Refugees vs. the Politics of Anti-Refugee Sentiment

By: Shreya Dandu

This blog will highlight the facts and the trends of global migration and will shed a light on the current situation of Darfur refugees, while recognizing the value and the outstanding contributions the refugee community makes worldwide and how we can leverage that.

It’s extremely concerning that the global number of people forced to flee persecution, violence, and conflict has now crossed the staggering milestone of 100 million for the first time on record. The overall figure includes refugees, asylum seekers, and the 59.1 million people that are internally displaced within their own countries. If all of these people made up a single country, it would be considered to be the 14 the most populous country in the world. Sudan, in particular, saw the deterioration of its humanitarian crisis within this past year, as violence intensified and the number of IDPs increased to over 3.2 million. Around 442,000 internal displacements were reported during 2021, which is more than five times the figures reported for the previous year and the highest since 2014. More than 80 percent of the 3 million internally displaced people of Sudan live in the 5 Darfur states, with more than 200 incidents of violence reported within Darfur in 2021. According to the Norwegian Refugee Council, Sudan is one of the 10 most neglected displacement crises in the world due to lack of media attention, lack of funding, and lack of international political and diplomatic initiatives.

Despite the worsening refugee crisis and the need for people to reach safety, the persisting debate over if refugees are bad for the host countries still remains. The United States has seen a downward trend in the admittance of refugees despite the fact that the number of people being forced to flee their homes is increasing. During the Trump administration, the United States saw a sharp decrease in the admittance of refugees mainly due to the administration arguing that refugees will take away jobs from citizens and cost the government more money. Similar sentiments were echoed across Europe, as growing populist sentiments have allowed for migration policy to be controlled. The perpetuation of these myths has been extremely harmful to refugees, as there have been numerous studies that stress the positive impact that refugees have in their host countries.

One of the most harmful and most common arguments against the admittance of refugees is that natives of the host country often lose jobs to refugees due to increased competition. Many migration economists believe that refugees actually create new jobs by creating new businesses,
spending their incomes on American goods and services, and by raising the productivity of U.S businesses. New research also indicates that refugees could contribute about $3.2 billion to the U.S economy if they are given equal access to employment opportunities and are paid the same
wages as their native-born American counterparts. A draft study by the Department of Health and Human Services in 2017 found that refugees brought in $63 billion more in government revenues over the past decade than they cost. Refugees also boast high rates of entrepreneurship
– surpassing other immigrants and U.S natives. Over 13 percent of refugees were entrepreneurs in the United States during 2015, compared to the 9 percent of U.S natives. Experts estimate that when refugees start their businesses, they can generate up to $100 million each year, benefitting
their host countries immensely. Refugees also fill up jobs in key industries like the service and agricultural sectors. Many Darfuri refugees, in particular, have experience being farmers and worked their land for income generation, and often kept goats, cattle, or camels. According to
interviews, many refugees from Darfur are eager to work despite them facing cultural differences.

Refugees can also help their home countries in the medium to long-term when they are resettled in foreign countries. Refugees are noted to have a significant role in transferring technology and knowledge back home, translating into more competitive and diversified economies. Many Darfuri refugees and migrants have sent remittances back home to their family in Sudan, which have been mainly used by their families for consumption needs, helping the humanitarian situation there. In 2020, it was reported that Sudan has received over $495 million in personal remittances.

Given how refugees can be a huge asset to host countries if given the proper protections and support by host countries, it is only natural to wonder what the United States could do to help admit more refugees. The Biden administration is working on a private sponsorship program that currently helps admit Afghan and Ukrainian refugees. Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) urges everyone to voice support for the private sponsorship program to include refugees from any country, particularly refugees from Darfur. In addition, it is also important to show support in staffing up government agencies that work in resettling refugees in order to streamline the security vetting process. Since many Darfuri refugees initially face difficulties in adapting to the cultural differences in their host countries, you can donate to DWAG to help Darfuri refugees to adapt to the cultural differences.

In celebration of World Refugee Day, it is important to celebrate the strength and courage of people who have been forced to flee their home in order to escape conflict and persecution. It is important to raise awareness for all the positive contributions refugees make around the world.
It is vital for everyone to remember that accepting more refugees isn’t just the morally correct thing to do, but also a smart choice to make, benefitting  everyone involved.

Shreya Dandu is a current student at George Mason University, with a major in Global Affairs and minor in Legal Studies. She serves as the current policy intern for Darfur Women Action Group.

Letter to the United Nations Security Council in Commemoration of World Refugee Day

To: H.E. Mr. Ferit Hoxha

Representative to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Republic of Albania to the United Nations

288 E 45th St. 7th Floor 

New York, NY 10017

Cc: All Member States of the United Nations Security Council 

Stand with Sudanese Refugees

For Civilian Protection 

Your Excellency Ambassador Hoxha,

Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) is writing to you in commemoration of World Refugee Day, June 20th, to express its grave concern about the situation that Sudanese refugees are facing, in particular, those displaced because of the genocidal violence that has been occurring in Darfur for nearly 20 years. 

The Darfur genocide, which began in the early 2000s under the leadership of former president Omar al-Bashir, has led to the displacement of over three million people, of which hundreds of thousands have been forced to seek refuge across Africa, particularly in neighboring countries such as Chad, which hosts 370,000 Darfuris and Egypt, which hosts a 56,100 Sudanese refugee, the overwhelming majority of which are Darfuris respectively. Despite the overthrow of Bashir in 2019 and efforts towards a transition to democracy in Sudan, genocidal violence and skyrocketing levels of displacement continued to plague Darfur. Now, the October 25th military coup has further emboldened and energized the Janjaweed and RSF to escalate its attacks in Darfur because they know they may commit them without repercussions. Today the situation across Darfur is reaching catastrophic levels, with unimaginable loss of lives and humanitarian crises inflicting unbearable pain and suffering on innocent men, women, and children. While violence has escalated throughout the region, West Darfur has experienced levels of brutal violence that have not been seen since the early days of the genocide. We fear that if the violence continues to escalate, it will cause even higher levels of displacement and suffering for the people of Darfur. 

DWAG is extremely alarmed by the situation Darfuri refugees are facing upon their arrival into what are supposed to be safer conditions. The majority of the 370,000 Darfuri refugees in Chad live in refugee camps and host communities in the regions of Ennedi-Est, Wadi Fira, Ouaddai, and Sila, which are located near the border between the two countries. While most Darfuris arrived in Chad following the genocidal campaign that began in 2002, due to the escalation of violence in West Darfur since the October coup, more than 12,000 Sudanese refugees, most of them children, women, and seniors, have arrived in Chad. Nevertheless, the situation remains catastrophic for Darfuri refugees in Chad, as the security situation is very precarious. Numerous reports of violent attacks and theft at gunpoint targeting Darfuri refugees have been reported. In addition, the overall level of humanitarian needs remains high. Among refugees in camps, access to income-generating opportunities is low, which drives the need for support for food security and livelihoods. Access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) and health services is limited because of outdated infrastructure in camps, which is often more than 15 years old. In these refugee-hosting regions of Eastern Chad, the rate of access to potable water is estimated to be only about 50%. In recent years, humanitarian needs have been negatively impacted by significant funding shortfalls and a declining level of food assistance provided to refugees from Darfur. The conditions that Darfuri refugees face in Chad should not be tolerated by the international community and must be addressed this World Refugee Day.

Moreover, the Darfur genocide has caused countless Darfuris to seek refuge in Egypt, but the vast majority of Darfur refugees in Egypt are not officially registered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). It is estimated that there are hundreds of thousands of Darfuri refugees in Egypt, but only around 24,000 are officially registered by the UNHCR in Cairo. Egypt is a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol and to the Organization of African Unity’sUnity’s 1969 Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa. However, Egypt has no domestic procedures and institutions for the protection of vulnerable asylum seekers. The Egypt office of UNHCR carries out all aspects of registration, documentation, and refugee status determination. UNHCR has tried to ensure that the Egyptian government takes on the responsibility for refugee status determination to meet its legal commitments under the conventions, but the Egyptian government not only refused but it sent UNHCR a letter stating some significant reservations to the conventions, which limited refugees access to education, healthcare, and employment. As a result, UNHCR is responsible for processing the refugee applications and assisting in resettlement, but due to budget cuts, the UNHCR office in Cairo has been unable to meet the needs of all the refugees in Egypt. This has led many to live under miserable conditions for long years, lacking basic health, education, and social services. They have also been subjected to racism, discrimination, and poor treatment by Egyptian and Sudanese authorities not only because of the Egyptian government’s affiliation with the Sudanese military and Bashir regime, but with the negative stigma surrounding refugees, and indigenous Africans, in particular. Even in attempts to flee to a third country such as Israel, they have been subjected to torture and killing by traffickers or Egyptian border guards. Furthermore, Sources in Cairo have confirmed that women and children living in Egypt have recently become more at risk of sexual violence and killing and are systematically targeted for crimes and retaliation by the host community with no international or local protection mechanism. 

The 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol, both legally binding documents, emphasize that state parties are expected to cooperate in ensuring that the rights of refugees are respected and protected. Therefore, we urge you to address this dire situation with the swift concern and attention it deserves and be the voice for Darfuri refugees so that the Albanian government and the United Nations Security Council may undertake urgent action to provide adequate protection and services to those in need. 

DWAG calls upon the United Nations Security Council to take the following actions: 

  • Increase food and WASH assistance to provide adequate living conditions to Darfuri refugees in Chad and Egypt; 
  • Pressure members states that are hosting Darfuri refugees to increase security for refugees in the areas surrounding camps;
  • Convene an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council to address the situation in Sudan, in particular Darfur, to rally multilateral action to prevent attacks against civilians to prevent further displacement. 
  • Authorize a United Nations force to protect civilians in Darfur;
  • Hold the Sudanese leaders accountable for the escalating violence;  
  • Appeal to the western nations accepting refugees to increase their refugees’ quota and give priority to Darfuri refugees to be protected;
  • Demand the immediate surrender of al-Bashir, Haroun, and Hussein to The Hague to hold them accountable for their crimes against the people of Darfur.

We appreciate your urgent and kind consideration. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us for more information or with any questions.


Niemat Ahmadi

Founder and President

Darfur Women Action Group

1629 K St. NW 

Suite #300

Washington, D.C. 20006

United States

Global Week of Action

DWAG’s Global Week of Action: End the Genocide in Darfur and Demand Accountability to Prevent Future Genocide  

Please join us from April 19, 2022 through April 28, 2022

Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) cordially invites you to join our Global Week of Action during this Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month. We invite you to organize events in solidarity with the genocide victims in Darfur and to recommit yourself to the fight for adequate justice for victims under the slogan of “A Future Without Genocide.” 

The Darfur genocide is one of the worst and longest genocides in history. We need you because of the urgency of the situation. We invite you to join us in our planned activities for our Global Week of Action or organize your own, including rallies, protests, panel discussions, or video screenings, to bring attention back to the forgotten plight of those still suffering in Darfur. The Darfur genocide that began 20 years ago is ongoing while millions are trapped in makeshift camps and fearful of going home because their attackers haven’t been apprehended or held accountable. The fear is still present because the anti-genocide movement has faded out and the voice of concerned citizens has gone silent. 

To date, millions of people have been killed, displaced, and rape is continuously used as a weapon of war while most of the world leaders remain silent. Recently, there has been escalating violence against innocent civilians. There are attacks across Darfur against those who have survived genocide and those survivors have been displaced hundreds of times. The Sudanese armed forces have thrown protestors and resistance leaders in jail without formal charges. The armed forces are killing innocent people including human rights activists in places like Jebel Moon and nearby areas as well as setting villages on fire.

Due to a lack of accountability, the genocide in Darfur is still ongoing. From April 19th through April 28th, supporters of DWAG, Sudanese activists, and friends of Sudan and Darfur are invited to join DWAG’s Global Week of Action or create their own week of action. DWAG’s Global Week of Action will include:


We need your support in the fight against genocide. If we can get people to take action, we can show the world that we care and that in the face of genocide, the world must not look the other way. We can make a difference. Please let us know if you will be joining us in any or all of these activities. 

Please share with us your plan so we can help amplify your voice by encouraging people to join you and promote your events on social media.

Thank you, 

Darfur Women Action Group

Promising Update: Abd-Al-Rahman, “Ali Kushayb,” Trial at International Criminal Court

As the first week of the International Criminal Court (ICC) trial of Abd-Al-Rahman, better known as “Ali Kushayb,” comes to a close, we want to commend the powerful statements by the prosecution and the bravery of the victims, who will come forward, albeit anonymously, to tell their stories. The judges have authorized 142 victims to participate in the trial. With the brave cooperation of the victims and the tireless work of the prosecution to present strong evidence, we are confident Ali Kushayb will be convicted of all 31 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Victims will finally realize the beginning of long-awaited justice.

ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan began his opening statements by commenting on the start of the Holy Month of Ramadan, in which Muslims fast from dawn to dusk. The breaking of the fast every evening is called iftar. He analogized and noted that in Sudan, “there has been another fast that they have been partaking, not because it is their choice, but it is the waiting for justice, and from that perspective, this is a momentous day. It is an iftar of sorts for the millions of Sudanese throughout the world for this day to come.” 

Ali Kushayb was a former leader of the cruel Janjaweed militia. He is responsible for leading the horrific operations of systematic murder, torture, and rape of innocent men, women, and children. Ali Kushayb, as described by witnesses, tortured them through beating, and has killed people with an axe. Additionally, he ordered the execution of at least 5 children between the ages of 10 to 12. Ali Kushayb also commonly arrested people with the guise that they were “rebels” and would order the Janjaweed to murder them. In one instance, the Janjaweed murdered 137 people over the course of just 3 days. This is only the beginning of victim testimony. While these details are excruciatingly painful to hear, it is imperative to tell the stories of the victims, so that each of them have their day in court. It is also imperative to share these stories to achieve justice and raise public awareness of the Darfur genocide.

Ali Kushayb, who has pleaded not guilty to all 31 counts, in his opening remarks claimed that,  “I came of my own free will. No one brought me here. I came here to correct the misleading falsehoods attributed to me, and I congratulate the International Criminal Court for being a fair court of law.” We must disagree that the charges against him are “misleading falsehoods.” It is no surprise that he denies the charges, but we have no doubt that the ICC has a qualified prosecution team, team of lawyers, and judges presiding over the case, that will no doubt deliver the justice that Darfuri victims deserve. The process of justice may take time, but the truth will eventually come out in the coming months. We are looking forward to witnessing innocent Darfuris and Sudanese people, affected by his inhumane crimes, rejoice in seeing him behind bars. 

In the meantime, we ask the public to stand in solidarity with Darfur and continue to support not only the Ali Kushayb trial, but to demand accountability for other indictees. We ask the public, our supporters and partners, to bring attention on social media and through other means to the situation in Darfur and Sudan at large. We equally urge the media to keep the coverage and focus on this important case that has been largely neglected for years. Additionally, we demand the international community, the UN and its bodies, including the UN Security Council, and the member states of the ICC to continue its efforts to hold other perpetrators of the Darfur genocide accountable. Former President Omar Al-Bashir still remains at large and orchestrated the genocide under his regime. Justice is not just convicting Ali Kushayb, but convicting all perpetrators responsible for the mass atrocities committed in Darfur for the past 20 years. Together, through our efforts, we can stop and prevent further genocide in Darfur.

We urge the United States to support accountability for crimes in Sudan because there will not be peace, security or stability in Sudan unless there is accountability. We urge you all to stand with us collectively to empower the victims and the affected communities to seek justice and restore their livelihood.

Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month

A Future Without Genocide

This April, as we mark Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month, Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) is launching a month-long campaign to bring the needed attention to the long-standing Genocide in Darfur. This month was chosen because April contains many significant dates in the history of Genocide. These include the beginnings of the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, the Armenian Genocide, and the Anfal campaign against Iraqi Kurds. Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month aims to share knowledge about what Genocide is, past genocides, and the continuing fight against Genocide today. As we come together this month, we must commemorate the past by recognizing those who lost their lives and demanding accountability for past and present crimes.  

Sadly, the Genocide that started 20 years ago in Darfur has not been resolved, and millions of victims continue to suffer while living in deplorable conditions and remain under constant attack. Beginning in 2002/2003, the government of Sudan initiated a genocidal campaign in Darfur, and by 2006 over 300,000 civilians, disproportionately women and children were slaughtered. During the Genocide, over 3 million people were forced to flee their homes, and 2.7 million are still living in camps. Widespread displacement continues to affect the Darfuri people. Beyond the targeted slaughter, countless women and girls are subjected to rape and other forms of gender-based violence by government soldiers as a tool of Genocide. 

The crimes committed against the people of Darfur are crimes of a global magnitude. Although some world leaders have made strong statements about the need to hold those perpetrators accountable, they have failed to take concerted action to bring the individuals responsible for these crimes to face justice. Moreover, the recent developments in Sudan are a clear indicator of the consequences when the international community fails to hold despotic leaders accountable. Their inaction has emboldened the military to continue the tactics of the Bashir regime of violating international human rights and humanitarian laws, usurping power through a coup, and killing innocent civilians. 

To commemorate the past, we must fight for accountability for present crimes and prevent future occurrences of Genocide. Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) will be commemorating the 2022 Genocide Prevention Month by raising awareness of the Darfur genocide with a special focus on accountability through the theme of “A Future Without Genocide.” Darfur genocide continues today because our leaders fail to impose consequences for those responsible. Additionally, this special focus will also highlight the trial of Abd-Al-Rahman, better known as “Ali Kushayb,” the former Janjaweed militia leader. His trial with the International Criminal Court (ICC) will begin on April 5, 2022. The ICC has charged Kushayb with 31 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Despite this progress, four more indicted criminals have yet to be brought to justice, while many Janjaweed leaders and militiamen who committed mass atrocities have yet to be charged or prosecuted. For example, the ICC has charged the former President of Sudan Omar Al-Bashir, with war crimes and crimes against humanity, but he remains at large. Al-Bashir orchestrated and is complicit in the Darfur genocide that happened under his regime. Therefore, we must rally our movement and double our effort to fight for justice. We call on the Biden administration and the member states of the UNSC to publicly speak about the Darfur genocide and demand accountability.

The United States has condemned and suspended aid to Sudan, yet more needs to be done to ensure the restoration of a civilian-led government; pressure must be exercised on Sudanese military officials. The United States must prioritize accountability, promotion of human rights, and life with dignity for the people of Sudan. The United States must stand with the people of Sudan in this time of significant loss and work to bring a civilian-led government that will bring about democracy and sustainable peace. Use the letter on our website to draft an email to your legislator or as a script for a phone call. We must urge the United States government to do more to support the people of Sudan.

We must act now to ensure that Darfur can strive toward a peaceful future. Therefore, the DWAG team would like to invite our supporters and those who believe in a future without genocide to join us in cultivating a collective effort that will ensure that genocide is a story of the past and not the future. This month, we will be holding events that will bring awareness to the Darfur Genocide and highlight the importance of accountability for these atrocitie. We will accompany these events by posting updates on our social media and website. Our goal is not only to raise awareness about the ongoing genocide in Darfur but to demand justice from our leaders in power. In the coming days, we will provide you with more details about our campaign and how you can participate in the multiple action opportunities to make a difference in the lives of the victims in Darfur.

Join us this Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month by participating in our events and efforts to demand justice and accountability. Post in connection with DWAG’s efforts this April by utilizing the hashtag #FutureWithoutGenocide so that we may signal our collective support and solidarity with the people of Darfur and victims of the genocide.


Darfur Women Action Group

Escalated Violence and Villages Set Ablaze in West Darfur

Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) is extremely alarmed by the ongoing systematic and escalated attacks in Jebel Moon, West Darfur. We are also alarmed about the overall recent increase in violence in Darfur, which has harmed a number of unarmed civilians.

On March 7th, militias launched an attack in Jebel Moon and nearby areas that killed, displaced and injured many civilians. The attacks include gunmen killing two humanitarian workers and injuring seven. The death toll is most recently at 16 from those attacks and there are 16 wounded. In a more recent deadly attack, militiamen killed 20 people and wounded dozens when they set a number of villages on fire including Berdi, Igra and Kafana. Mohamed Abdallah El Doma, the former wali (governor) of West Darfur, said that the conflicts in West Darfur and Jebel Moon in particular are not tribal conflicts but are “systematic attacks aimed at controlling lands, fertile pastures, and resources such as gold and minerals.” We are saddened and concerned at the loss of life occurring, all in the name of acquiring power and resources.

Furthermore, attackers shot and killed three human rights activists in Jebel Moon. Front Line Defenders, an Irish based organization, confirmed the deaths stating that the activists were assessing human rights violations in West Darfur. Moreover, recurring attacks in Jebel Moon have left at least 36 people dead and 150,000 families displaced. We are extremely saddened and angered to learn of these innocent lives lost and our heartfelt condolences are with the families. Among these recurring attacks, many incidents of sexual violence have also been reported by sources on the ground, where authorities brutally raped and killed women and young girls under 16 years old in an effort to humiliate and instill fear in the community. 

In response to the horrifying violence, the resistance committees in West Darfur are organizing protests in front of state government offices condemning the rising violence in Jebel Moon and demanding action to end it. We stand with the brave resistance committees and support their protests.

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary General (STSG) for Sudan, and head of the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), Volker Perthes, expressed deep concern over the escalating violence in Jebel Moon. Mr. Perthes encouraged “Sudanese authorities to work actively to restore stability in the region and urges all parties to act with restraint in order to prevent further violence.” We appreciate Mr. Perthes’s statement but in the face of brutality, statements are not enough. It is imperative that the UN demands an investigation and holds attackers accountable. Mr. Perthes calls for Sudanese authorities to restore stability and act with restraint, but that does not change the situation unless the UN takes practical steps and urges the UN Security Council to provide protection for civilians.

These attacks are extremely alarming and are not isolated incidents. This is systematic violence that has been going on for 20 years and counting. Arab militias, supported by the government in Khartoum, deliberately target indigenous Africans, especially in areas that are rich in natural resources and agriculture in Darfur. We strongly denounce the escalating killing and the injuring of civilians and the burning of their villages. Thousands of victims are left without a home or humanitarian assistance. These attacks in Jebel Moon and across Darfur continue to happen because of the lack of accountability for perpetrators. Therefore, DWAG calls on the international community to take strong accountability measures and pressure Sudan to stop its militias from attacking civilians in Darfur. 

We call on the international community, the United States and the UN Security Council to take the following measures; 

  • Demand an immediate investigation into all violent incidents particularly the killings of innocent civilians and rape of women and children
  • Demand Sudan to open unimpeded humanitarian access to those in need
  • Impose targeted sanctions on individuals for committing and promoting gross human rights violations, including travel bans and asset freezing on military generals to ensure financial accountability to limit their access to weapons
  • Impose measures of criminal accountability and support the ICC to investigate the past and present crimes and to bring those responsible to face trial
  • Demand that Sudanese authorities disarm the Janjaweed and withdraw its forces from civilian areas, in particular near the areas of camps for the internally displaced, which will protect civilian life and their human rights
  • We equally urge our supporters to speak up, spread the word and demand their leaders to take swift action to end the suffering and bring lasting peace and stability in Sudan 

It is imperative that the United States and the international community stand with the people of Darfur and Sudan, not the government, by prioritizing accountability, protection of human rights and respect for human dignity in Sudan.  

We must continue to make our voice louder and demand accountability. With our collective effort, we can make the difference and end the suffering in Darfur and across Sudan.

Sample Letter: Sudan Democracy Act

Dear (Senator Name),

My name is (Name), and I am from (state). I am extremely concerned about the situation in Sudan, as it has continued deteriorating since the military takeover. On October 25, 2021, military forces led by Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan staged a coup deposing Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok from power and detaining several other government officials and activists while the military proceeded to dissolve the transitional government. Despite facing an uphill battle against military forces determined to continue their illegitimate grip on power, the Sudanese people continue to rise up while peacefully resisting the military coup. However, when the people protest rejecting the coup, they are met with excessive force and imprisonment. As of February 14, 2022, at least 81 individuals have died as a result of the brutal use of force, and hundreds have been injured in Khartoum. Moreover, the military coup has led to an increase in violence across Darfur. As attention is centered in Khartoum, the military has mobilized its proxy militias to wage catastrophic destruction in Darfur with impunity. The resurgence of violence in West, Central, and North Darfur back in November and December resulted in at least 200 innocent civilians dead and about 25,000-30,000 newly displaced people. Our fear is that this situation—if left unaddressed—would descend into a crisis in which many more civilians will lose their lives trying to bring a civilian-led democracy to Sudan. 

The United States has condemned and suspended aid to Sudan, yet more must be done in order to ensure the restoration of a civilian-led government; pressure must be exercised on Sudanese military officials. During a hearing on February 1st, 2022, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee stated that there would be bipartisan legislation to impose targeted sanctions against the Sudanese military officials responsible for the coup so long as the military continues to threaten a democratic transition and violate human rights. Therefore, as your constituent, I am writing to you in solidarity with Darfur Women Action Group (DWAG) to ask for support and accelerate the Sudan Democracy Act before it is too late. 

I appreciate the United States’ efforts in condemning the coup and suspending all aid to the Sudanese government. However, in order to restore a civilian-led government and promote peace and stability, I urge you in your role to demand that the United States must impose targeted sanctions, including asset freezing and travel bans on individuals responsible for the coup and for ordering excessive force against civilians in order to hold them accountable for their actions. The United States must prioritize accountability, promotion of human rights, and life with dignity for the people of Sudan. The United States must stand with the people of Sudan in this time of great loss and work to bring a civilian-led government that will bring about democracy and sustainable peace. As your constituent, I kindly urge you to be our voice and a voice for those voiceless in Sudan by supporting the United States’ efforts to end the crisis in Sudan and supporting the bipartisan Sudan Democracy Act that will impose targeted sanctions on the military junta before it is too late.