Following its independence in 2011, three years of civil war have left South Sudan on the cusp of full-scale genocide, with its sovereignty discredited by warring elites, asserts a new Special Report from the Council on Foreign Relations Ending South Sudan’s Civil War:
Katherine Almquist Knopf, director of the Africa Center for Strategic Studies based at the National Defense University, makes the case that an international transitional administration is the only realistic path to end the violence and to allow South Sudan the kind of “clean break” from its leaders and power structures that can restore the country to viability. Moreover, she argues that an international transitional administration would not necessitate an investment costlier than what the United States is already spending—more than $2 billion since 2013 (and more than $11 billion since 2005).
“The only remaining path to protect [South Sudan’s] sovereignty and territorial integrity, restore its legitimacy, and politically empower its citizens is through an international transitional administration, established by the United Nations and the African Union (AU), to run the country for a finite period,” argues Knopf.
Meanwhile, the deaths of Chinese members of a UN peacekeeping force don’t appear to have changed government policy, The Wall Street Journal reports:
Beijing has said it is proceeding with its peacekeeping-force expansion. The senior Chinese defense official said China had no plans to withdraw or add troops in South Sudan. That said, the deaths forced some hard questions to the forefront.
“They have to decide how far they want to go in being physically present in those unstable situations,” said Princeton Lyman, U.S. Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan from 2011 through 2013. “What is their objective as a world power?” asks Lyman, a board member of the National Endowment for Democracy.