Sudan: Sami al-Hajj Released, Khartoum Attacked

This round-up highlights the two most talked about recent topics in the Sudanese blogosphere.

Let's get started with the release of the Sudanese al-Jazeera journalist Sami al-Hajj from Guantanamo Bay where he was held for six years without trial.

Eman was evidently happy:

إنتو حاسيـــن بالأنا حاسة بيهه؟؟
هل إنتو مبسوطيــــن زيي كدة؟؟؟

She asks “can you feel what I'm feeling?? Are you as happy as I am??”

Drima had this to say about the matter:

I’ve held a very simple position on this matter. Give the man a fair trial, and if he’s found guilty, lock him up behind bars for as long as possible. If he is found innocent, release him as soon as possible. That’s it. Full stop. Is that too much to ask?

Amjad blogged about Sami's release but then removed his post for a vague reason stated below:

I just want to point out that the post of Sami Al-Hajj's interview which I posted 2 nights ago is now removed. The post took another path other than the one it was opened for, and hence I thought it would be best to close it to avoid that path it was not opened for.

We believe that Sami Al-Hajj was released on humanitarian basis and we should all just hope that the entire world lives in peace regardless of race, religion or politics.

Thanks. :)

Daana, just like Eman, was also happy after hearing the news of the release:

Sami al Hajj is free….after 6 years in Guantanamo Bay
I haven't been this happy in a while

And now, let's move on to the news about the attacks on Khartoum, Sudan's capital. Drima blogged a thorough coverage of what happened:

The Darfurian rebel group Justice and Equality Movement mounted a bold attack on Khartoum less than two days ago but was stopped at the outskirts of the city by the Sudanese Armed Forces. It was a big battle involving helicopters and significant aerial bombardment.

… There are very mixed and heated Sudanese sentiments over this daring move with some (mainly the Southern Sudanese and some Darfurians) staunchly supporting it and others against it.

As for me, I strongly condemn the attack. The United States and the UN have condemned it too. I’m glad they’ve made it clear they won’t accept this kind of behavior. It undermines all efforts aimed at implementing the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and finding a political solution for Darfur.

Andrew Heavens, a freelance writer based in Khartoum made a nice list of the possible reasons behind the attack:

  1. A bloody PR move to get JEM some headlines
  2. Retribution – to bring some of Darfur's suffering to Khartoum
  3. Humiliation of Khartoum and exposure of holes in its security system
  4. Chad-backed revenge for the two Khartoum-backed rebel raids on N'Djamena
  5. The move of a mad, power-hungry warlord
  6. A move to break the stalemate in the Darfur peace process AKA Operation Longarm
  7. Distraction while JEM prepares for an offensive on El Geneina
  8. A genuine coup attempt
  9. The first stages of a coup attempt to test for support among army and opposition
  10. Creating chaos in the capital leading to the breakdown of the state

Kizzie demanded that the government steps down!

The rebels are in the capital. Yes, innocent civilians are going to die and destroying the capital is not going to help the crises in Darfur in anyway, but it was going to happen…sooner or later.

What to do?
We need a transitional government right now, Bashir needs to STEP DOWN!
Hand over the power to a transitional government for the next year, until the 2009 elections.

If the government doesn't take this seriously and implement the darfur peace agreement, the whole country is going to collapse.

If the concerned international community cares about Sudan, they should pressure the government to step down.

She also posted the following pictures of the aftermath of the attack:

Meanwhile, JohnAkec published a long post about peace in South Sudan.


  • So happy to hear Sami al Hajj has been released.

  • Ramada

    the Arab Journalist been in Guantanamo for years without trial
    it shows how much the US cares about freedom of speech…

    as a matter of fact the US occupation of Iraq made sure to bomb and destroy ALjazeera office in Palestine Street, while at the same time buying Iraqi journalists to publish pre-written articles under their names.

    all this should come out to the american press.

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