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Pulitzer Center

Reports from the field - an exclusive channel of Pulitzer Center reporting

The Curse of Boundaries

By David Morse, for the Pulitzer Center

"I was cursed to be born Sudanese," Pagan Amum once told me wryly "A good friend of mine was born in a village near the Uganda border where they didn't even know exactly where the boundary lay. He was cursed to be born Ugandan."

The Curse of Boundaries

David Morse, for the Pulitzer Center

"I was cursed to be born Sudanese," Pagan Amum once told me wryly "A good friend of mine was born in a village near the Uganda border where they didn't even know exactly where the boundary lay. He was cursed to be born Ugandan."

Part 1 - Ethiopian refugees: a side story

Jen Marlowe, for the Pulitzer Center

A man wearing a green, yellow and red knitted cap with the words "End Racism" greeted us as we walked through the Ethiopia market in Kakuma Refugee Camp. (Kakuma was established to house the influx of Sudanese refugees escaping from camps in Ethiopia in 1991, but since has sheltered refugees from Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, DRC, Burundi, and Tanzania--exact breakdown in next post)

Tolerance for Risk

   There was no armed convoy leaving Kakuma for Lokichokio this morning, so we left the sprawling refugee camp the way we had arrived - by taxi.  The harrowing drive along the two-lane blacktop began. Garang, who has the longest legs, was in the front passenger seat, and the other four of us were crowded into the narrow back seat, as the taxi driver sped past Turkana tribespeople herding goats or carrying loads of firewood on their heads, increasing his speed whenever he could to 140 kph along the straightaways and negotiating the occasional S-curves with the aplomb of a professional racecar driver, knowing that our safety lay in speed.

   To drive at any less than maniacal speed on this section of highway is to court banditry.

Kakuma Camp

David Morse, for the Pulitzer Center

Our charter flight out of Juba was delayed by a day, as it could not take off from Malekal owing to muddy airstrip. (Appropriately, by temporary e-mail address is rainysuday@yahoo.com) We did make it out Sunday morning, though, in time to settle in at the International Rescue Committee guest quarters where we were delighted to find actual beds, privacy (one to a room) and flush toilets - our first experience with these luxuries in the month we've been traveling.

Kakuma Camp

   Our charter flight out of Juba was delayed by a day, as it could not take off from Malekal owing to muddy airstrip. (Appropriately, by temporary e-mail address is rainysuday@yahoo.com) We did make it out Sunday morning, though, in time to settle in at the International Rescue Committee guest quarters where we were delighted to find actual beds, privacy (one to a room) and flush toilets - our first experience with these luxuries in the month we've been traveling.

   Kakuma is a warren of mud huts topped with corrugated metal.