According to the BBC, women made up 70 percent of protesters in the movement for peace and democracy in Sudan. Women have been at the forefront of unprecedented protests in the country over the past year. Yet despite this, female organizers are underrepresented in peacemaking processes and still face gender-specific threats to their work, including sexual violence and oppression.
Just two months ago on June 3, paramilitary forces responded violently to a peaceful sit-in protest. Over a hundred people were killed and 700 were injured. The Sudanese Central Committee of Doctors also revealed that over 70 female protesters were raped by armed forces during the crackdown.
Since the ousting of President Omar al-Bashir in April, Sudan’s military has been controlling the nation. Protesters are demanding that the military hand power to a civilian-led democratic administration. As leaders of the movement, the efforts of women have largely contributed to bringing about a proposed power-sharing deal stipulating that women hold at least 40 percent of the country’s national legislative seats. This deal has recently put in jeopardy once again with renewed violence against a group of young protesters, waged by the Sudanese military.
According to the UN, when women are involved in peace processes, resulting agreements are 35 percent more likely to last. However, women make up 3 percent of mediators and witnesses, and only 9 percent of negotiators worldwide.
Read about the new power-sharing deal and the situation in Sudan.
Learn about the role of women leaders in the protests.
Read about what Sudanese women protesters are calling for in the resistance.