“On Saturday (15 April), when I heard the first gunshots outside at about 8.30am while having breakfast, I was just starting what I thought was my last day in Khartoum. My luggage was ready, my fridge and cupboards emptied, with just a few hours to wait before going to the airport to fly home after one year spent in Sudan.
Quickly, we all went down to the safe room of our guesthouse, in the basement. I spent the day there sitting on the floor, along with more than 10 colleagues, jumping at the sound of heavy shooting, of low-flying war planes and subsequent bangs from air strikes. The sound was echoing in the room, walls and small windows were shaking. The sound of silence often ensued a blast, but never lasted for long.
That first night, sleeping on the floor surrounded by my colleagues, while I was supposed to be at the airport to fly home, I was thinking of the people stuck inside the airport, where heavy fighting has been taking place. I could have been one of them. Some were wounded and have not been able to leave the airport to be treated.