Friday, June 25, 2010

Risky Business

Carleton University Magazine
Spring 2010 issue

With dwindling staff budgets, freelancers are the go-to source for media content, but free agentry is rife with work hazards. One woman's story of being booted out of Sudan for asking too many questions

Untitiled Photo

KHARTOUM - It was just before 2 p.m. when I arrived at the departure hall of Khartoum International Airport, heading home to Canada to spend Christmas 2008 with my family. I dragged my worn suitcase through the front doors, barely taking two steps when I heard someone calling my name.

I turned to find a large man with an unsmiling, unfamiliar face. "We'd like to see you in the office," he said in Arabic. A sick feeling swallowed up the pit of my stomach. Having been stopped once before by national security officials in Sudan's conflict-ridden Darfur region, I knew what this meant. National security controls everything in this country, including who flies. I had no choice but to follow.

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