Conflict

“Like the military of the village” Security, justice and community defence groups in south-east South Sudan

Year of Publication
2020
Document Publisher/Creator
LUCIAN HARRIMAN AND SAFERWORLD
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://www.csrf-southsudan.org/repository/like-the-military-of-the-village-security-justice-and-community-defence-groups-in-south-east-south-sudan/
Summary
Improved security and access to justice are urgent priorities for the people of South Sudan, who have been targeted by government and opposition forces since the beginning of the civil war in December 2013, and affected by violence between and within communities.

A variety of groups and institutions aim, or claim, to provide people with security and justice, from the police, military and courts, to customary leaders and the armed opposition. As most people cannot rely on the government for protection, they often have taken security into their own hands by forming armed community defence groups.

This report explores how the various providers of security and justice have responded to violence associated with the civil war, intercommunal conflict, and gender-based violence in Torit and Kapoeta, south-east South Sudan. It asks to what extent the security and justice providers are effective, inclusive, and whether people see them as legitimate. The report aims to inform efforts to enhance people’s security and access to justice.

The report emphasises the role of community defence groups who, in many parts of South Sudan, have been drawn into the civil war and become involved in large-scale violence, as is documented in Saferworld’s 2017 ‘Informal armies’ report. However, this subsequent report shows that elsewhere in the country, such groups have resisted involvement in the war, and have facilitated dialogue and cooperation between the government and armed opposition, and provided security for communities.
Date of Publication
16/09/2020

Conflict and Gender Study – South Sudan

Year of Publication
2018
Document Publisher/Creator
Dr. Catherine Huser
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://media.africaportal.org/documents/conflict-and-gender-study--south-sudan.pdf
Summary
This study of Conflict and Gender in South Sudan was undertaken in support of the ‘Addressing Root Causes
Fund Programme’ (ARC). Being implemented over a five-year period between September 2016 – August
2021, the Programme is to be undertaken by a consortium of three organisations including: the Agency for Cooperation and Research in Development (ACORD), Dan Church Aid (DCA), and the Centre for Conflict
Resolution (CCR) (here-after referred to as the Consortium). Funding is provided by the Addressing Root
Causes (ARC) Fund of the Government of the Netherlands. This study, conducted between February 20 to
March 27, 2017, was meant to contribute to the baseline upon which the Programme is being constructed.
Date of Publication
30/09/2020

The Fundamental Problem of South Sudan

Year of Publication
2018
Document Publisher/Creator
Abraham A. Awolich
Institution/organisation
The Sudd Institute
Topic
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://suddinstitute.org/assets/Publications/5b7ff41e0d559
Summary
This weekly review investigates what underpins the ongoing conflict in South Sudan, which is barely understood. The ongoing peace processes, namely IGAD led mediation efforts, National Dialogue and SPLM reunification efforts, may not bring a durable peace if the origin of the conflict is not well understood. Many people claim these processes to be complementary to one another, but none has been able to point exactly to where such complementarity arises. This paper attempts to discuss the fundamental cause of the conflict and how the ongoing peace processes can be used to resolve it.



Following an evaluation of the High-level Revitalization Forum and the National Dialogue processes, the paper concludes that neither of the two processes alone has all it takes to resolve the grievances. It proposes a four staged-framework that starts with the High-Level Revitalization Forum and the current National Dialogue grassroots consultations as the first stage, after which the two processes could be merged in a second stage we call the Comprehensive Dialogue stage, which is then transformed into a Constitutional Conference as a third stage and ending with Elections as the fourth and last stage of the peace process. Analytically satisfying these stages, however, demands investigating what the fundamental problem is and how the proposed solutions resolve it.
Date of Publication
05/10/2020

Guidance framework for understanding different forms of violence and their implications in South Sudan

Year of Publication
2020
Document Publisher/Creator
CSRF and WFP
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://www.csrf-southsudan.org/repository/guidance-framework-for-understanding-different-forms-of-violence-and-their-implications-in-sout/
Summary
This guidance framework is the output of discussions involving representatives from operational aid agencies and groups in South Sudan. The purpose of this guidance framework is:
1. To facilitate more nuanced understanding of organised violence in South Sudan and address potentially misleading use of catch-all terms (e.g. ‘inter-communal violence’ or ‘cattle raiding’)
2. To facilitate more constructive inter-agency dialogue and planning through a more consistent use of key terms used to describe organised violence in South Sudan
3. To summarise key considerations from a programming (rather than security/legal) perspective in relation to conflict sensitivity, livelihoods/services and protection.
Date of Publication
11/11/2020

South Sudan From Fragility at Independence to a Crisis of Sovereignty

Year of Publication
2014
Document Publisher/Creator
Lauren Hutton
Institution/organisation
Clingendael Institute
Topic
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://www.clingendael.nl/publications
Summary
What started as a political conflict in South Sudan in December 2013 has created a community security crisis drawing in a range of uniformed, community and foreign security actors. At the heart of the crisis, are fundamental questions about democratic values, about accountability and justice, and about overcoming narratives of marginalisation, impunity and ethnic bias.

This conflict is a contest between social orders in which the authority of the prevailing order is being challenged. The relevance of the systems through which resources are accumulated and dispersed is also being challenged. This is a crisis of the legitimacy of the state. The state represents the formal expression of a range of highly subjective interfaces and partnerships through which power is shared and order finds expression.

This paper outlines some of those interfaces and partnerships, and the dynamics that affect them. It is by no means an exhaustive analysis but rather a tracing of threads of interaction at local, national and regional levels as a way of mapping some of the webs that connect across space and time in South Sudan. The overall approach is one that seeks to understand how South Sudan moved from fragility at independence to a full-blown crisis of internal and external sovereignty in December 2013. The paper is divided into sections addressing different aspects of state behaviour – the search for internal legitimacy; the search for security; and the search for economic growth and development. These sections provide an overview of the domestic context and key dynamics determining the national agenda. After the internal focus, the paper provides an overview of regional relationships that affect South Sudan’s internal and external political behaviour.

The main argument presented here is that the current crisis in South Sudan is the result of challenges to the internal legitimacy of the SPLM as part of the state formation process and the expression of sovereign authority. The current configuration of power in Juba has proven an astute capacity to build and break alliances across different interests and to dominate the narrative in a way that limits response options. This is not a nascent government anymore but one which is demonstrating how it wants to run internal affairs and how it will exercise sovereign authority. The narrative of this internal legitimacy is based on overcoming the threat of rebels and a coup; it is a narrative firmly rooted in the politics of ethnicity and the focused use of coercion, and which seeks to reinforce the centrality of the party as liberator and guarantor of order. But for the South Sudanese state (and by extension the ruling SPLM), the ability to exercise sovereign authority remains dependent on managing increasingly competitive external relations.

When the dust has settled on this latest crisis, the question that remains will be one of the level of violence which is acceptable for a state to employ against its citizens under extreme circumstances. The current crisis in South Sudan is reshaping not only internal relationships between the organs of state and the people but also the parameters of relationships between the government and international actors in the region and beyond. These are highly lucrative relationships at all levels leaving much still to be fought over. This crisis has become a civil war in which the state is beginning to deal with its legitimacy and sovereignty issues within a deeply fragmented country and highly competitive regional political economy.

Housing, Land and Property Disputes in South Sudan: Findings from a survey Nimule, Torit, Wau and Yei

Year of Publication
2019
Document Publisher/Creator
David K. Deng and CSRF
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://www.csrf-southsudan.org/repository/housing-land-and-property-disputes-in-south-sudan-findings-from-a-survey-nimule-torit-wau-and-yei/
Summary
Introduction
This report presents findings from a survey of 677 households in four towns in South Sudan – Nimule, Torit, Wau and Yei. The survey gathered data on respondent perceptions of and experiences with HLP disputes.
South Sudan is currently experiencing a crisis of displacement on a scale that not been seen since the height of the previous civil war in the mid-1990s. In just five years, the current conflict has displaced two in five of all South Sudanese in the country.
Public authorities and development partners should address problems of housing, land and property (HLP) as they relate to displaced populations as an integral component of the emergency response. This would encourage safe, voluntary and dignified returns and prepare the ground for more substantial return and resettlement efforts in the future.

Attachment
Date of Publication
20/11/2020

TEACHING THE VIOLENT PAST IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN NEWLY INDEPENDENT SOUTH SUDAN

Year of Publication
2016
Document Publisher/Creator
Merethe Skårås and Anders Breidlid
NGO associated?
Source URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.17159/1947-9417/2016/1312
Summary
This article analyses the teaching and learning of South Sudan history from 1955–2005 in secondary schools in South Sudan with a specific focus on national unity. The article argues that the national narrative of South Sudan is still closely tied to enemy images of the former enemy of Sudan in the north, while internal ethnic tensions are suppressed and excluded from the official national narrative taught in the classroom.
Attachment
06.pdf948.87 KB
Date of Publication
11/12/2020

Pastoralism and Conflict in the Sudano-Sahel: A Review of the Literature

Year of Publication
2020
Document Publisher/Creator
SEARCH FOR COMMON GROUND
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://www.csrf-southsudan.org/repository/pastoralism-and-conflict-in-the-sudano-sahel-a-review-of-the-literature/
Summary
Across the African continent, 268 million people practice pastoralism, both as a way of life and a livelihood strategy, contributing between 10 to 44 percent of the GDP of African countries. In recent years, this adaptive animal production system has faced growing external threats due to issues such as climate change, political instability, agricultural expansion, and rural ban-ditry that have transformed the rangelands in which they operate. From Mali to South Sudan, governments, regional bodies, peacebuilders, development agencies, environmentalists, economists, and security forces are actively attempting to address the sources of violence and instability that affect both pastoral communities and the rural societies with whom they share resources and landscapes.

These interventions are often shaped by differing assumptions about the source and nature of these conflicts, despite the avail-ability of extensive research and analysis. Though the local dynamics of conflict vary across different contexts, a number of trends and debates appear throughout the literature on pastoralism and conflict. This review draws on several hundred sources to synthesize the major points of consensus and divergence in the existing literature and identify relevant research gaps. This anal-ysis presents data from across Sudano-Sahelian West and Central Africa, to link comparable findings that are often presented in isolation.

Although conflicts over land and water resources in the Sudano-Sahel have long been a political concern and were a major point of contention in the colonial and post-independence eras, they have gained prominence in recent years due to the ongoing spread of violence, instability, and displacement across the region. Latent tensions over resource access and control, which his-torically only occasionally led to violence, have now erupted in some cases into cycles of mass killings and reprisals. In Nigeria, escalating rural banditry and reprisal violence between farmers and pastoralists has left thousands dead and many more dis-placed. In central Mali, the escalation of these conflicts culminated in the massacre of 160 members of the Fulani ethno-linguis-tic and traditionally pastoralist group in Ogossagou in March of 2019, as well as ensuing reprisal violence. And, across Sudan, South Sudan, and the Central African Republic (CAR), conflicts relating to livestock migration and cattle theft have played a critical and destabilizing role in internal insurgencies and cross-border conflict. For these reasons and more, conflict dynamics relating to pastoralism and pastoral communities have become a shared policy priority throughout the region.
Date of Publication
04/09/2020

THE KAFIA KINGI ENCLAVE: People, Politics and History in the North - South boundary zone of Western Sudan

Year of Publication
2010
Document Publisher/Creator
Edward Thomas
Institution/organisation
The Rift Valley Institute
NGO associated?
Source URL
https://riftvalley.net/publication/kafia-kingi-enclave
Summary
When South Sudan became a separate state in 2011, its northern boundary with the Republic of Sudan became an international border, the longest and most contentious in the region. At the westernmost extremity of Sudan, Kafia Kingi is a key meeting point between the two countries. This mineral-rich area is currently under the administration of South Darfur state, in Sudan, but is due to be returned to Raga County, in South Sudan, under the terms of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement.
The Kafia Kingi Enclave was first published in 2010, in the run-up to the January 2011 referendum on self-determination for South Sudan. Based on extensive archival research and hundreds of interviews in Sudan, it tells the story of the people of Kafia Kingi and Raga, and describes the choices they face today. The Kafia Kingi Enclave is available from the RVI website as a free-to-download digital edition. Print edition in English and Arabic available from Amazon.
Date of Publication
05/01/2021