Sudanese children ‘plead for peace’ amid Eid celebrations marred by war

Refugee children from Darfur in the Iridimi camp in eastern Chad (Photo: RD)

As the war rages on, children across Sudan have expressed their sorrow over their inability to celebrate Eid with joy. In a series of interviews with Radio Dabanga, children across Sudan voiced their hopes for an end to the increasingly protracted war led by Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan and Mohamed ‘Hemedti’ Dagalo, so they may resume their normal lives and attend school.

Ranad El Fateh from Nyala laments, “We are not happy this Eid because our family and relatives are not with us.” She continues, “We hope El Burhan and Hemedti understand what we feel if they have children. They must stop the war because it shows no mercy to children. If they want war, we want peace and education.”

Omer Khaled from Khartoum echoed these sentiments, telling Radio Dabanga, “We hope the war will end so we can live in peace and celebrate Eid as we used to.” He reminisced about previous Eid celebrations filled with joy, playing with friends and visiting family, an experience starkly different from this year’s muted celebrations.

In Omdurman, Abdelazim Abdallah described the situation as heart-breaking. “Eid has lost its joy and has become a sad day,” he said, hoping for divine intervention to end the suffering.

Eyad Suleiman, residing in El Amarat, also shared his distress. “We are not happy with Eid because of the war and the absence of our loved ones,” he told Radio Dabanga, calling on the two warring sides to halt the fighting and achieve peace for the sake of security and happiness.

Binara Ahmed, displaced from Nyala to the White Nile state, expressed her sorrow over the altered celebrations. “Eid has become tasteless, and the celebrations have vanished,” she said. She longed to return to Nyala to reunite with her family and friends at school.

El Geneina

In El Geneina, the capital of West Darfur, many noted the absence of traditional Eid festivities. One resident told Radio Dabanga that the city had not recovered from the devastation of war. “The demand for sacrificial animals is low due to high prices, and the joy of Eid has been extinguished by the conflict,” he said, adding that feelings of joy and togetherness have been replaced by coldness and division.

Despite the grim circumstances, the resident conveyed Eid greetings to all Sudanese, expressing hope for a better, more peaceful future.

Another El Geneina resident emphasised the importance of forgiveness and reconciliation during Eid, despite the ongoing conflict. “We remember those lost to this senseless war and pray for the swift recovery of the injured and the safe return of the missing,” he said, extending congratulations to displaced people and refugees, particularly those in eastern Chad.

Commander-in-chief of the Sudanese Armed Forces Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan also extended his Eid greetings in a post on X, on Saturday.. “Congratulations to the patient and steadfast Sudanese people on Eid Al-Adha,” he said. “We are confident that we will achieve complete victory and restore our homeland to health, security, strength, and unity—a homeland of freedom, peace, and justice.”

As the Sudanese people call for peace, their heartfelt pleas underscore the urgent need for an end to the conflict that has overshadowed the joy of Eid.