Poetic photo of Sudan's 'Lady Liberty' sheds light on anti-government protests

PHOTO: A Sudanese woman leads a chant during a protest demanding Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir to step down along a bridge in Khartoum, Sudan, April 8, 2019, in an image taken from a social media video.PlayCourtesy Lana H. Haroun/via Reuters
WATCH Sudan's 'Lady Liberty' sheds light on protests

A video of a Sudanese protester reciting revolutionary poetry to thousands of protesters in Sudan's capital of Khartoum has gone viral, making her an icon for the mass anti-government mobilization that started last December.

In the video, the young woman, Alaa Salah, is dressed in a traditional white Sudanese thobe and large gold round earring. Sudanese on social media called her "Kandaka," an ancient Nubian title for queen.

The video was taken on Monday during a sit-in by the army headquarters and presidential palace.

Salah’s identity was confirmed to ABC News by Tahani Abbas, a Sudanese women’s right activist.

Abbas told ABC News the footage was helping to shed light on the situation in Sudan.

"It is a salute to the struggles of the Sudanese women and their participation in the mobilization," Abbas said.

A photo of Salah standing on top of a car surrounded by protesters, pointing her finger to the sky, has earned her the nickname "Lady Liberty."

The poetry Salah chanted spoke of the injustice the people of Sudan have endured at the hands of their ruler in the name of religion.

PHOTO: A video of a Sudanese protester reciting revolutionary poetry to thousands of protesters in Sudans capital Khartoum went viral in April 2019. Shahd Bakhit Abdoun via Storyful
A video of a Sudanese protester reciting revolutionary poetry to thousands of protesters in Sudan's capital Khartoum went viral in April 2019.

"They jailed.... burnt us in the name of religion," she said.

"We who quenched the Nile with our boiling blood shall be silent not in the face of unjust traitor," Salah recited as the crowd chanted back “Thawra!” -- the Arabic word for "revolution."

Demonstrators are protesting the rising cost of living and many are calling for the end of President Omar Bashir's 30-year rule.

On Saturday, tens of thousands of protesters marched to army headquarters to mark the 34th anniversary of the ousting of former president Jaafar Nimeiri, who was removed in a bloodless coup after a popular uprising.

Twenty-two protesters and five soldiers have been killed since the sit-in began Saturday, The Associated Press reported.

Comments