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The dark side of Sudan’s oil

Elzahraa Jadallah
The oil story in Sudan is one of controversy, a messy tale of money, conflict and power enmeshed in the country’s decades-long conflict.
23.04.2019  |  Khartoum, Sudan
Oil industry facility in Sudan.  (photo: InfoNile | Elzahraa Jadallah)
Oil industry facility in Sudan. (photo: InfoNile | Elzahraa Jadallah)

This story was originally published by InfoNile, a geo-journalism platform mapping data on and reporting about water issues in the Nile Basin.


For decades, the oil industry has backed Sudan’s economy. Oil was also a key issue in the decades-long civil war between the government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in the South that ended in 2005 and led to the split of Sudan in 2011.

Both countries have a very poor record of keeping in-country oil exploration in check. Decades of oil drilling is linked to water, soil and air contamination often severely affecting the environment, people and animals.

Elzahraa Jadallah travelled to the villages around the oil fields in southwest Sudan, near the border with South Sudan, to investigate the impacts of pollution caused by the oil industry on the people and the environment.

View the InfoNnile multimedia project revealing the dark side of the oil industry for local people in Sudan’s West Kordofan State.

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