AN OPERATION to rescue 2000 Christian women and children, who
have been trapped in Sudan, began last week.
The Barnabas Fund, which is carrying out the operation, reported
on Thursday of last week that the first of 12 chartered flights
departed the previous day from Khartoum, bound for Juba, the
capital of South Sudan. Churches in South Sudan were ready to offer
assistance to the refugees, it said.
The aid agency said that Christians of South Sudanese origin in
Sudan were "extremely vulnerable", having been stripped of their
citizenship when the South voted to secede, and given a deadline by
which to leave.
In Sudan, the vulnerability of Christians had "intensified" as a
result of "violent Islamic protests" against the film Innocence of
Muslims (News, 21 September), the agency said. Several Western
embassies in Khartoum had been attacked, and threats had been made
The international director of the Barnabas Fund, Dr Patrick
Sookhdeo, said: "We are extremely thankful to the Lord that this
rescue mission is now under way. . . These vulnerable Christian
women and children, who have endured so much hardship and
suffering, can now look forward to beginning a new life in South
The President of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, and the President of
South Sudan, Salva Kiir, met for talks this week in Addis Ababa,
the capital of Ethiopia. There has been persistent conflict between
the two countries since South Sudan became independent last year.
The Archbishop of Sudan, Dr Daniel Deng, has appealed to the two
countries not to go to war (News,