A hacking group called Anonymous Sudan took X, formerly known as Twitter, offline in more than a dozen countries on Tuesday morning in an attempt to pressure Elon Musk into launching his Starlink service in Sudan. The hackers claimed they wanted to raise awareness about the civil war in Sudan and the poor internet quality there. They posted a message on Telegram saying: “Make our message reach to Elon Musk: ‘Open Starlink in Sudan'”.

The hackers used a DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack, which floods a website’s servers with huge amounts of traffic to make it inaccessible. X was down for more than two hours, affecting thousands of users in the US and the UK. Neither X nor Mr Musk have publicly responded to the hackers’ demand.

Anonymous Sudan has been active for several weeks, hacking websites and social media accounts to “benefit Sudan and Islam”. The group has denied any connection to the wider Anonymous hacker collective or the Russian government, despite showing support for President Putin and his policies.

The group shared evidence with the BBC that it is located in Sudan, such as their live location on Telegram, their passports, and screenshots of their devices. The group said its long-term goal is to show the world that Sudanese people have skills in different fields, despite their limited capabilities.

The BBC spoke to two members of the group, Crush and Hofa, who explained their methods and motives. They said they use simple and unsophisticated hacking techniques that anyone can learn online. They also said they are not afraid of being caught or prosecuted, as they believe they are doing nothing wrong.