While the Republic of South Sudan celebrates independence as the world’s newest nation, the rest of Sudan remains a chronically unstable state that threatens peace in both Sudans and the region, said the Enough Project in a new report, “Rethinking Sudan After Southern Secession.”
Decades of government policies focused on consolidating wealth and power at the center continue to spark unrest in Sudan’s peripheries, including in the states of Darfur, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile, where demands for democratic change have become more acute. Violence continues to engulf civilians in South Kordofan and insecurity remains a constant in Darfur, while the potential for conflict to flare elsewhere in Sudan is great.
Report authors Amanda Hsiao and Laura Jones write:
The international community’s robust push for southern independence, while successful, has been the continuation of a long-standing piecemeal approach to Sudan that addresses the symptoms, rather than the root causes of the country’s conflicts. Such an approach, marked by multiple peacekeeping missions and peace talks, has not achieved lasting or comprehensive peace throughout all of Sudan.
The international community must rethink its strategy vis-à-vis the North by pushing for a comprehensive approach that is inclusive of all of Sudan’s regions and addresses the national issues that lie at the heart of all of Sudan’s fissures. The fundamentally similar grievances that exist across Sudan’s peripheries must be addressed on the national level, starting with an inclusive constitutional process that brings talks taking place between the government and these peripheral communities into a single conversation. Without this necessary shift in policy, sustained peace and stability in both Sudans and the larger region will be impossible.
Read the full report: “Rethinking Sudan after Southern Secession”
Photo: U.N. peacekeepers Sudan patrol (UN Peacekeeping on Flickr)