Sculpture: Nuba Survival
Watch it here
The UN aid programme in Sudan may have saved two million lives in the South from starvation. But in the remote Nuba mountains, the hungry claim that UN aid is being used as a weapon of war.
In this exclusive report we enter the Nuba Mountains that have been closed to outsiders for over a decade. Only a few aid agencies beat the government blockade to ship food in to a population hovering precariously on the verge of famine. The Nuba mountains are on the border of Muslim North Sudan and the Christian and animist South Sudan, but the Nuba people have always allied themselves with the Southern Sudanese SPLA rebels putting themselves in the firing line of the Islamic extremist government. They used to farm the plains but since government troops burnt and looted their villages most are scratching a living on the Mountains thin, rocky soils. When famine struck last year in Southern Sudan UN food aid was distributed to everybody expect the Nuba. Naima Kuku lost her husband to war then lost her child to the famine. "There was massive starvation, I was dehydrated and had no milk for my child." A local resistance commander reports 20 government attacks this year. 3000 civilians have been captured and taken to so-called Peace Camps. "They're not peaceful, " Nuba leader Youssef Khor tells us, "boys are taken to be trained as soldiers, the girls to be wives for the soldiers." Escapees recount tales of torture. Lined out in the sun, the rebels display their very own 200 POWs. About half are Nuba boys who were sent back by the government to fight their own. Many Nuba claim that the UN's aid Programme in Sudan has been manipulated by the ruling National Islamic Front to accelerate the regime's Programme of ethnic cleansing of the Nuba Mountains. UN food aid has been used to bring starving people into the notorious Government-run peace camps