The Brief: People have been changing their profile pictures to blue to raise awareness about a massacre by the military in Sudan which killed over 100 people.
Social media users are changing their profile pictures to a blue swatch and sharing the hashtag #BlueForSudan to raise awareness about violence in Sudan, including a massacre by the military that killed dozens of pro-democracy protestors in Khartoum.
Crisis In Sudan
Pro-democracy demonstrations have been going on since December to protest the rule of former president Omar al-Bashir. In April, protestors began a sit-in. Five days later, Sudan’s president Omar al-Bashir was ousted in a coup.
The sit-in continued, as protestors demanded that power be handed over from the military. On June 3, the military raided the sit-in, killing at least 100 people and injuring hundreds of others. Doctors have reported at least 70 rapes by paramilitaries during the attack and its aftermath and that at least 40 bodies were dumped into the river Nile.
After the raid, the government censored internet access in Sudan, largely cutting-off communications between people in Sudan and the rest of the world.
This hashtag #BlueForSudan and Blue For Sudan social media movement began as an effort to honor Mohammad Mattar, a 26-year-old engineer who was killed in the raid while trying to protect two women. To honor him, Mattar’s friends and family members changed their profile pictures to blue, which was reported to be his favorite color. Others followed on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to remember those killed and to raise international attention about the military’s deadly raid.
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✨•PLEASE DONATE to sudan, using link in my bio. Just 5$ or even 1$ and place a blue heart emoji if you’ve donated below. 💙it’s a great start. •Please WRITE to your members of Congress , condemn the violence used. Text the word RESIST to 50409 and an automated bot allows you to write a letter to them. Express your need to see the Sudanese people attain a democratic and civilian led government. Ask for a meeting, we’ve been lobbying here in DC, and have had senators and congressmen/women issue statements. There are even hearing happening currently in congress discussing the Sudanese uprising. This is largely due to our efforts in the diaspora to engage them. We are doing something more than just updating our dp to mattar blue. • Please also PRAY for sudan. Never underestimate the power of prayer. • Please also repost any news you see pertaining to sudan, we are the only voice they have rn. ✨Screenshot this photo and change your profile picture on IG. This is an effort to raise awareness as we the sudanese diaspora are the only voice. The internet has been completely turned off in sudan. The government has shut it down in order to conceal its massacres and crimes against civilians. On the 29th day of Ramadan Janjawid militia burnt peaceful protestors alive in their Revoultion tents, threw live bodies into the Nile river, anchored with stone bricks to ensure they drowned, shot over 100 peaceful protestors dead, raped little girls, grown men and female medical doctors and so many more atrocities I can’t go on. Please change your profile photo and let the world know what’s happening. We cannot be silenced. United we stand, divided we fall. Our strength is in our unity. This specific shade of blue is in honor of the martyr Mohammed Mattar. @mattar77 Rest In Peace king. This shade of blue was his profile pic on IG and as a symbol to honor ALL martyrs we’ve changed our dp into blue. Rest In Peace courageous souls we’ve lost. But not in vain. The Revoultion continues . A civilian led democratic government will come to reality and the Sudanese people’s dreams will be actualized. #tasgotbas #iamsudanrevolution #sudancivildisobedience #sudanuprising and as a
Influencers Draw Attention
Some celebrities and social media influencers are using their platforms to raise awareness about the uprising and violence in Sudan, providing information about the atrocities that have occurred and linking to relevant organizations and fundraising campaigns.
Shahd Khidir, a Sudanese American beauty influencer posted about her devastation after the murder of her friend, Mohammad Mattar. She also wrote about the lack of coverage from the mainstream media and the struggle for Sudanese activists to communicate with the outside world duringt social media and internet blackouts.
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It’s really hard being an influencer and sharing information that is “off brand” and not worthy of the “feed” but I cannot hold this in anymore. I am at my office crying because I have so many emotions in me and I feel horrible. There’s a massacre happening in my country Sudan’s and a media blackout and internet censorship for four consecutive days. There is no objective media sharing what’s going on expect for @aljazeeraenglish which had their offices shot down. My friend @mattar77 was MURDERED by the Rapid Support Forces. My best friend was in hiding on June 2 and that’s the last time I spoke to him. He was missing for 4 days and when I got in touch with him he said: “I was caught, beaten and abused and humiliated and arrested and had my phone confiscated from me. I am injured currently.” And all I could do this post this. I am sorry to all companies I am running campaigns with but my editorial calendar is currently on pause. I am willing to refund all and everything right away. Please, just send me an email. To my followers/supporters who this is too much for I am also sorry but my regularly scheduled content/reviews is also on pause. If this offends you, I am sorry. But I need to speak out and share this in a time like this. If you want to support me please share this information as widely as possible and don’t be silent. Be an ally because we need your help. And tune into my stories for more information. THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY HAS BEEN SILENT. #sudanuprising #sudanese_protest #مجزرة_القيادة_العامة #عيد_شهيد #اعتصام_رويال_كير #اعتصام_القيادة_العامه #السودان @wawa_waffles @sudanuprising.updates #sudanrevolts #sudanuprising #iamsudan #iamsudanrevolution #sudanese #freesudan
Celebrities including Demi Lovato, Kehlani, Rihanna, and Ariana Grande have turned their profile pictures blue and/or posted information on their social media about the massacre and revolution in Sudan.
Amongst the campaigns to bring the crisis in Sudan to public attention, some opportunistic individuals have taken advantage of the traction the topic has gained to misleadingly attract social media followers, likes, and clout. The most prominent case is that of the Instagram account @sudanmealproject and accounts by similar names. These accounts claimed that they would donate a certain amount of money to relief efforts in Sudan for every time someone tagged them in their Instagram story or shouted them out on social media.
After it was exposed as a scam, Instagram removed the @sudanmealproject account from its platform, but copycat accounts remain and continue to pop up.
#SudanUprising #SudanRevolts #IAmSudanRevolution
Even as critics suggest that this campaign could merely be a form of ineffective ‘slacktivism,’ people continue to change their profile pictures to blue, share information about the crisis, refer their followers to donation links, and sign petitions. Over 430,000 people have signed a Change.Org petition urging the United Nations to investigate the human rights violations by the Sudanese military.
This widely-shared Instagram post by user @sainthoax highlights the discrepancies between international reactions to the burning of Notre-Dame and the massacres in Sudan.
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I don’t usually like to draw these comparisons, but this time it feels urgent. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Minutes after it started burning, Notre-dame was splashed across front pages and all over news bulletins around the world. Within days, $1 billion was raised for restoration. Meanwhile, there’s a government led massacre in Sudan that has taken the lives of 500 innocent people (including children) and it’s barely receiving any news coverage. It’s heartbreaking to realize that architecture seems to have more value than human lives. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ @khaledbeydoun brilliantly wrote: “3 reasons why the Sudan massacres & humanitarian crisis aren’t receiving the global attention it deserves: 1) The victims are Africans 2) The victims are Black 3) The victims are Muslims” ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The media’s selective empathy is appalling. It is our duty to raise awareness. Go to this link to find out how you can help: www.gofundme.com/emergency-medical-aid-for-sudan
Most of these social media campaigns focus on elevating the voices of Sudanese activists, sharing information that the mainstream media has largely ignored, and encouraging people to do what they can to support the people of Sudan.
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We must stand united against the injustice in Sudan. For the voiceless who are being murdered. Your silence is lethal. @hadyouatsalaam . Please sign this Change.org petition demanding that the UN must investigate the 3rd of June human rights violations in Sudan by the Military. http://chng.it/fFzYDtBNQb . If you can donate please do so to UNICEF or Save the Children who are both working to support those displaced by the conflict. . . Photo credit to the artist. #istandwithsudan #blueforsudan #sudan #sudanmassacre #sudanrevolts #yoursilenceislethal #prayforsudan #sudanuprising #iamsudan #iamsudanrevolution #earthfocus #discovertheworld #artofvisuals #freesudan #istandwithsudan🇸🇩
3 Reasons why the #Sudan massacres & humanitarian crisis aren't receiving the global attention it deserves:
1) The victims are Africans
2) The victims are Black
3) The victims are Muslims
— Khaled Beydoun (@KhaledBeydoun) June 11, 2019
i wrote this poem for those like me who are far from home and unable to escape what happened there. please fight for sudan and everyone who needs it#sudanrevolts #sudanuprising #sudan #blueforsudan #مدن_السودان_تنتفض pic.twitter.com/sOaSzALZNl
— sudan knees (@darfurdarling) June 17, 2019
Violence in #Sudan:
– ~500 people have been killed
– ~750 people injured
– at least 19 children have been killed
– at least 70 cases of reported rape
– thousands missing and thousands more detained. pic.twitter.com/0mBHFCtX5E
— Khaled Beydoun (@KhaledBeydoun) June 14, 2019