More Links in News & Events

The Carter Center in Sudan: Promoting Peace and Health

The government of Sudan and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army signed protocols May 26 in Naivasha, Kenya, bringing closer to reality a full peace treaty to end to Africa's longest running civil war. The Carter Center has been deeply committed for more than a decade to alleviate suffering in Sudan and help find ways to bring a lasting end to the war. The Center's first project was the Sasakawa-Global 2000 agricultural project that began in 1986, helping farmers to greatly improve crop yields. From that first activity, the Center has continually expanded its efforts to help the long-suffering people of Sudan through four programs that are today active in the country.

The Center's Conflict Resolution Program has been dedicated to helping find ways to end Sudan's civil war--working with President Carter to directly negotiate between the parties and working to help focus local, regional, and international opinion on peace, not war. Among the program's achievements was the negotiation of the 1995 "Guinea worm cease fire," which gave international health workers--including the Center's own Guinea Worm Eradication Program--an unprecedented period of almost six months of relative peace, allowing health workers to enter areas of Sudan previously inaccessible due to fighting. More recently, President Carter brokered the 1999 Nairobi Agreement between the governments of Sudan and Uganda, in which the governments pledged to stop supporting rebels acting against the other.

The Guinea Worm Eradication Program, the flagship public health program of The Carter Center, has helped reduce the worldwide incidence of Guinea worm by 99 percent since it started in 1986. The program continues to work toward eliminating Guinea worm, a feat that would make it only the second disease, after smallpox, ever to be eradicated; because Sudan harbors 63 percent* of the remaining cases of Guinea worm, it is a crucial site for eradication efforts. The success of the Guinea Worm Eradication Program has promoted Sudanese public health and welfare, while fostering the introduction of two additional health programs, the river blindness and trachoma initiatives, to the region. However, the vitality of these public health initiatives depends on peace, because the hazards of the civil conflict hinder their implementation. Thus, the Carter Center's Conflict Resolution Program, its Guinea Worm Eradication Program, the River Blindness Program, and the Trachoma Control Program, work in conjunction to produce a better life in Sudan, by building hope, fighting disease, and waging peace.

*Total reported cases in 2003

Learn more about the Carter Center's work in Sudan

Read more about the May 26 peace protocol agreement: BBC News

Note: The Carter Center is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites.

Carter Center Photo: A. Little

A Sudanese man receives certification following a conflict resolution workshop led by Carter Center staff in Khartoum.


Carter Center Photo: E. Howard

Ermino Emilio, seated in front of a Guinea Worm Eradication Week banner, fights the disease in Sudan's Bahr el Ghazal Zone. Read more about this "Guinea worm warrior."

Map of Sudan

Civil war has raged in Sudan for all but 10 years since its independence in 1956, making it perhaps the most troubled country in Africa. Located immediately south of Egypt, Sudan is the continent's largest country, comparable in size to the United States east of the Mississippi River, and is home to 42 million people of many races, religions, and cultures. Since the beginning of the most recent phase of the war in 1983, more than two million people have died and four million have been forced from their homes. Despite great potential natural wealth, war has left Sudan as one of the poorest nations on earth, leaving its citizens prey to famine, disease, and widespread human rights abuses. The discovery of oil and the completion of a commercial pipeline have only intensified the struggle between north and south, leaving many parts of the south inaccessible, preventing humanitarian aid from reaching the areas where it is most needed. Sudan has long been dubbed "the forgotten war" and is quite possibly the world's longest-term humanitarian catastrophe. 

Donate Now

Sign Up For Email

Please sign up below for important news about the work of The Carter Center and special event invitations.

Please leave this field empty
Now, we invite you to Get Involved
Back To Top