It is over a hundred and twenty years since General Charles Gordon suppressed the slave trade in Sudan. Before he began his campaign, seven out of every eight Sudanese were slaves. Incredible as it may seem, the spectre of slave raiders swooping down on unprotected villages is once again becoming commonplace in Sudan. Tens of thousands of Sudanese Christian men, woman and children have been kidnapped and sold as slaves by government soldiers.
The thunderous sound of horses made the villagers of Nyamlell drop their hoes and scatter into the bush. Gunfire crackled around the village as 300 men on horseback, camels and on foot crashed through the fields of maize. Clad in turbans and jalabas (long white robes) they brandished AK47 and G3 assault rifles, swords and spears. Within minutes they had killed 82 men.