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Fear and confusion in Sudan as US citizens scramble to leave

As Sudan’s conflict stretches into its second week, Americans rushing to flee the African country are looking to the US government for help.
The Saudi-flagged ferry passenger ship Amanah carrying evacuated civilians fleeing violence in Sudan.

WASHINGTON — For nearly two weeks, Thamir Mohamed and his wife, Aya, have been desperately trying to retrieve their two children, both US citizens, from Sudan.

The couple had traveled to Saudi Arabia for what was supposed to be a two-day visit earlier this month, leaving their 2-year-old and 5-year-old at home in Khartoum in the care of their maternal aunt. 

But their return flight to the Sudanese capital was canceled on April 15 as the country descended into violence. The family remains separated in what Thamir has called "the worst days of my life."  

“We contacted the American Embassy and got emails that said [the children] can go to Port Sudan,” he told Al-Monitor over WhatsApp. “I asked them, ‘How can they go to Port Sudan? The road is not safe.’ The embassy told me, ‘We don't know.’”

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