The north-east African country of Sudan is currently in chaos after several protestors were killed in a crackdown on a peaceful sit-in on June 3. BBC, quoting doctors, reported that 118 people have died in the country, while the authorities put the fatalities at 61. The Sudan crisis is the latest topic to be covered on the Netflix political satire show Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj.
The Sudanese military is cracking down on demonstrations asking for democracy in the country. The protests started as a demand to oust President Omar al-Bashir, who ruled the country from 1989 until April 11, 2019. The 30-year rule is significant because Sudan has been an independent country for only 63 years.
The Patriot Act episode on Sudan explores the atrocities that were committed against the citizens of the country under the rule of Bashir, the Darfur genocide of 2003 one among them.
Unrest against Bashir was sparked by the collapsing economy of the country. The Sudanese Professionals Association, a collective of doctors, health workers, and lawyers, were the main organisers of demonstrations against Bashir. Women were also at the forefront of the protests.
After the fall of Bashir, power in Sudan was transferred to the Transitional Military Council, but the SPA has called for a civil disobedience movement in favour of democratic rule to be implemented in the country. The main demands of the SPA are a civilian government, the end of militia, and women empowerment.
The Patriot Act episode also features host Hasan Minhaj’s interactions with Marine Alneel, a young Sudanese activist who lives in New York and had participated in the protest in Khartoum.