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South Sudan

  |  3 Aug 2015

Unchanged Resolution Opportunity

International community presented unified front to exert pressure on S Sudan’s warring parties to reach peace agreement: IGAD, African Union, UN, China and others, as part of new IGAD-PLUS mediation, 24 July proposed draft peace agreement, gave it to S Sudanese parties, gave them until 17 Aug to sign a final deal; S Sudanese parties dispute certain provisions but did not reject draft, raising hopes of agreement to end deadly 18-month conflict. U.S. President Obama late July visited Addis Ababa, met with regional leaders and Heads of State 27 July, discussed sanctions and other penalties for warring parties if they do not sign deal by 17 Aug. UNSC 2 July imposed sanctions on six govt and opposition generals. Most of ten SPLM Former Detainees (FDs), returned to Juba to mark Independence Day 9 July; notably the two most senior generals did not return. Low-level conflict in Maridi and Mundri forced over 4,000 civilians to flee parts of Western Equatoria.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jul 2015

Unchanged

Kenyan President Kenyatta 29 May announced “merger” of IGAD peace process and SPLM reunification process. Delegation of five out of ten SPLM-Former Detainees (FDs) early June visited S Sudan after considerable pressure from S Africa and Kenya: accompanied by S African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and Kenyan and Ethiopian FMs. Former detainee Pagan Amum reinstated as Sec Gen of SPLM 23 June. Merged process stalled 28 June as talks with President Kiir and former VP Machar in Nairobi failed. IGAD special envoys 8-10 June held consultations with S Sudanese parties to conflict, gave parties a “synopsis” of a draft agreement. AU Summit 7-15 June inaugurated ad-hoc high-level committee and former Malian President Alpha Oumar Konaré as AU high rep for S Sudan. Meanwhile, low-level conflict continued in W Equatoria and W Bahr el Ghazal, and on 28 June fighting resumed in Malakal. UN 30 June released human rights report documenting widespread rape and burning women alive; said “level of cruelty … suggests a depth of antipathy that exceeds political differences”.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jun 2015

Deteriorated

Month saw most serious clashes since Aug in Upper Nile and Unity states, and escalating tensions along Sudan-South Sudan border. Fighting broke out 27 April in Unity state capital Benitu and surrounding areas when govt forces attacked SPLM-IO-held areas. Clashes late April involving SPLA and Sudanese SPLM-N rebels in Pariang. Fighting broke out 21 April between govt troops and allied Shilluk group under command of SPLA Gen. Johnson Olony in Upper Nile state capital Malakal; over 10,000 Shilluk fled back to ethnic Shilluk territory, further 4,000 took shelter with UNMISS. IGAD 11 March announced formation of “IGAD-Plus” mechanism to expand peace talks, yet talks not taking place. Tensions with Sudan escalated: Sudan reportedly bombed several suspected Sudan Revolutionary Front areas in S Sudan’s Bahr El Ghazal region 8-11 April; Sudan President Bashir 29 April threatened to pursue SRF rebels in S Sudan territory.

South Sudan

  |  30 Apr 2015

Deteriorated Risk Alert

Month saw most serious clashes since Aug in Upper Nile and Unity states, and escalating tensions along Sudan-South Sudan border. Fighting broke out 27 April in Unity state capital Benitu and surrounding areas when govt forces attacked SPLM-IO-held areas. Clashes late April involving SPLA and Sudanese SPLM-N rebels in Pariang. Fighting broke out 21 April between govt troops and allied Shilluk group under command of SPLA Gen. Johnson Olony in Upper Nile state capital Malakal; over 10,000 Shilluk fled back to ethnic Shilluk territory, further 4,000 took shelter with UNMISS. IGAD 11 March announced formation of “IGAD-Plus” mechanism to expand peace talks, yet talks not taking place. Tensions with Sudan escalated: Sudan reportedly bombed several suspected Sudan Revolutionary Front areas in S Sudan’s Bahr El Ghazal region 8-11 April; Sudan President Bashir 29 April threatened to pursue SRF rebels in S Sudan territory.

South Sudan

  |  1 Apr 2015

Deteriorated

Serious uptick in fighting accompanied 6 March suspension of IGAD-led peace negotiations after what were termed “final talks” between govt and SPLM-IO ended without agreement. IGAD chair called for future mediation led by expanded “IGAD-plus” group possibly including AU, China, EU and “troika” (U.S., UK, Norway); no date set for resumption of talks, govt 31 March said it will oppose troika’s participation in negotiations. UNSC 24 March threatened sanctions against “senior individuals”. Military operations increased: govt 6 March launched coordinated offensives in Upper Nile capturing Wadakona and advancing toward SPLA-IO HQ in Pagak; skirmishes took place in Unity state; SPLA-IO 26 March attacked Ayod in Jonglei, clashes ongoing. Govt 24 Feb offered amnesty to SPLA-IO members until 31 March. Parliament 24 March extended President Kiir and elected officials’ terms by three years.

South Sudan

  |  2 Mar 2015

Unchanged

IGAD-led negotiations ended 2 Feb without peace deal; President Kiir and former VP and SPLM-IO leader Machar recommitted to ceasefire, signed document outlining areas of agreement/disagreement regarding proposed transitional govt. Disputes remain over structure of executive. Delayed negotiations began 23 Feb; Kiir reversed previous commitment to attend; 5 March deadline still remains amid scepticism deal will be reached. Small clashes continued in Unity and Upper Nile states. Murle South Sudan Democratic Army-Cobra Faction (SSDA-CF) splinter group 13 Feb defected from govt, pledged allegiance to SPLA-IO. UN confirmed gunmen 14 Feb abducted at least 89 boys, now training as child soldiers, from Wau Shilluk near Malakal, Upper Nile state; thousands of children already fighters. Defence minister 3 Feb signed new Status of Forces agreement with Ugandan counterpart; Ugandan troops may remain in S Sudan another four months. Govt 13 Feb suspended elections scheduled for June for two years as negotiations continue. Kiir 24 Feb issued executive order reversing dismissal of senior party members.

South Sudan

  |  2 Feb 2015

Unchanged

Multiple mediation processes ongoing, leading to multiple, uncoordinated agreements and processes. Three SPLM factions (govt, SPLM-IO, and separate negotiating group “SPLM 7”) 21 Jan signed symbolic agreement to “reunify” following talks mediated by Tanzania; China held talks between govt and SPLM-IO in Khartoum 12 Jan. Delayed IGAD summit postponed to 31 Jan; President Kiir and former VP and SPLM-IO leader Machar 29 Jan met in Addis Ababa to discuss terms of possible agreement. Fighting continued in Unity, Upper Nile states. SPLM-IO accused govt troops, police, pro-govt militia of series of attacks; govt counter-claimed, IGAD investigating. Warring parties clashed in Unity oil fields 5 Jan. Clashes continued in Lakes state, including attempt on life of caretaker governor; casualties now higher in Lakes conflict than in Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity.

South Sudan

  |  5 Jan 2015

Deteriorated
Peace talks reached standstill in face of intransigence from both sides over details of power-sharing deal, while fighting continued despite Nov recommitment to cessation of hostilities agreement. SPLM-IO conference early Dec passed resolution agreeing to share power with Juba govt on condition PM has full executive powers. Conference rejected proposed positions for VP and deputy VP; agreed to federal system of 21 states; established for first time military command structure; also agreed to separate its political and military wings. Ongoing skirmishes in Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity. Push at UNSC to impose sanctions on warring parties 9 Dec. reached impasse over U.S. opposition. National Election Council 1 Dec presented election calendar, insisted elections would be held in 2015; Council of Ministers approved $517mn election budget.

South Sudan

  |  1 Dec 2014

Unchanged

Renewed fighting between govt and SPLA-IO despite 7 Nov recommitment to peace deal, at which parties recommitted to cessation of hostilities under pressure from regional body IGAD, Troika (U.S., UK and Norway) and China. IGAD threatened sanctions if ceasefire broken. Talks due to resume in late Nov but now postponed “indefinitely”; no IGAD sanctions at 25 Nov expiry of two-week deadline set by IGAD for warring parties to reach power-sharing deal. SPLM-IO 10 Nov proposed elimination of VP position as part of transitional govt, seen by many as tactic to prolong negotiations; govt refused request. Parties late Nov traded accusations over reported attacks in Jonglei. UNMISS mandate extended 24 Nov with few changes. Canada 1 Nov imposed sanctions against rebel commander Peter Gatdet and presidential guard commander Marial Chanuong for violations of 23 Jan 2014 cessation of hostilities deal.

South Sudan

  |  1 Nov 2014

Unchanged Risk Alert

Warring parties preparing major offensives as hardliners appear determined to settle civil conflict through war: fighting continued throughout month, SPLA-IO 28 Oct launched major attacks on Bentiu prompting govt to threaten withdrawal from peace talks. UNSG Ban 30 Oct condemned renewed violence, urged parties to participate in negotiations, reach agreement on transitional arrangements. SPLM factions had late-Oct signed framework agreement on SPLM reform in Tanzania and accepted joint responsibility for war. Violence among Dinka clans and between civilians and SPLA following a forced disarmament campaign left hundreds dead in Lakes state. National Assembly 8 Oct passed controversial National Security Services bill; allows for arrests without warrants, shields officers from accountability, provides wide powers of surveillance and authority. MPs from ruling and opposition parties staged walkout after request for 72 hours to review revised bill rejected by Speaker of Assembly.

South Sudan

  |  1 Oct 2014

Unchanged

Fresh fighting erupted around oil facilities in Upper Nile’s Renk County 18 Sept. IGAD-led talks resumed 22 Sept following discredited Aug peace deal. Despite agreement on formation of transitional govt, President Kiir 2 Sept began preparations for 2015 general elections. SPLM-IO 22 Sept announced opening office in Kampala; delegation 20 Sept visited Beijing for bilateral talks with Chinese govt; China 21 Sept halted arms sales to govt; 25 Sept confirmed to send 700 troops to UNMISS for civilian protection later this year, particularly around oil installations. U.S. 18 Sept extended sanctions to SPLA Major General Santino Deng, SPLA-IO Major General James Koang Chuol for prolonging conflict. Authorities 16 Sept announced plan to ban foreign aid workers by 15 Oct, to be replaced by nationals; 17 Sept rescinded order.

South Sudan

  |  1 Sep 2014

Unchanged

Warring parties missed 10 Aug deadline for formation of transitional govt; AU, UNSC, IGAD renewed threats of punitive action against spoilers. IGAD 25 Aug announced new ceasefire deal and protocol for formation of transitional unity govt, including provisions on opposition PM, transitional justice, finance management and humanitarian concerns; threatened sanctions if govt not formed within 45 days. SPLM-IO 28 Aug refused to sign deal, said unhappy with PM provisions. Violence continued including killing of several aid workers; fresh fighting erupted 15 Aug in Unity and Jonglei states; further clashes outside Malakal town 21 Aug. UN helicopter 26 Aug crashed near Bentiu, killing 3; both sides traded accusations. UNDPKO deputy head 6 Aug said humanitarian aid operations in South Sudan largest in world; UN aid chief 28 Aug warned of famine if violence continues.

South Sudan

  |  1 Aug 2014

Deteriorated

Heavy fighting resumed: govt mid-July attacked 3 towns in Unity state including WFP food distribution site; SPLA-IO 19-21 July reclaimed control of Nasir; army 25 July retook town. Nasir attack condemned by IGAD, UN, AU, U.S.; no condemnation of govt offensive. SPLA-IO 22 July attacked Jonglei’s Ayod town; fighting ongoing. Both sides preparing for more intensive combat Mid- July request by Jonglei’s community leaders for UNMISS to relocate Nuer civilians from Bor to home areas or refugee camps prompted fears of another attack on UN base. Hundreds of Northern Bahr el Ghazal armed youth 16 July joined SPLA-IO; sporadic fighting continued in Northern and Western Bahr el Ghazal. Equatorians reiterated calls for federal govt structure to break “Dinka-dominated” power as tensions increased and clashes reported between Central Equatoria Mundari youths and Presidential Guard in Juba; SPLM-IO 16 July introduced 21-state scheme based on 1956 boundaries; some senior govt officials firmly opposed to federalism and increase in number of states but plan popular among many. IGAD-led peace talks expected to resume after over a month of hiatus delayed again; govt 29 July tried to exclude 10 political parties from talks; transitional govt agreed to as part of 10 June agreement unlikely to be established by 10 Aug deadline. Peace agreement with David Yau Yau’s South Sudan Democratic Movement/Army-Cobra Faction (SSDM/A-CF) now law; creates and gives special status to Jonglei’s Greater Pibor Administrative Area (GPAA), though tensions remain high around Boma and Pibor Town. EU 10 July announced sanctions against army general Santino Deng and SPLA-IO military leader Peter Gadet for ceasefire violations; renewed arms embargo. Amnesty International 17 July called for UNSC embargo amid reports of massive Chinese weapons transfer to Kiir’s govt. UNSC 25 July said South Sudan food crisis worst in world.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jul 2014

Unchanged

IGAD 10 June announced agreement reached to form transitional govt within 60 days, amid increasing threats of sanctions by mediation body. Despite pressure, govt boycotted upcoming talks after IGAD Executive Sec Mahboub Maalim allegedly referred to govt and opposition as “stupid”; Kiir 17 June demanded formal apology. SPLM-IO 22 June announced talks boycott over unfair selection of civil society organisations and preponderance of govt-affiliated representatives in mediation. Govt defections continued including 18 SPLM MPs 9 June; former SPLM detainee Ezekiel Gatkuoth 27 June joined rebels; at least 3,000 soldiers early June deserted in Upper Nile and Jonglei over non-payment of salaries. SPLA-IO also divided, several ground commanders critical of Machar’s participation in talks. Fighting continued in Jonglei, Upper Nile, Unity, including around oil areas. Humanitarian situation deteriorated with start of rainy season: UN 14 June warned 7mn at risk of starvation and disease, including 50,000 children; WHO 24 June reported almost 2,000 cases of cholera.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jun 2014

Unchanged

President Kiir, SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar 9 May signed agreement in Addis Ababa committing to cessation of hostilities, agreed to transitional govt and participatory peace process; Kiir 12 May postponed 2015 elections. Despite renewed ceasefire armed clashes continued as Nasir SPLA-IO HQ captured by govt and Bentiu captured by SPLA-IO. UNHCR 6 May reported over 11,000 predominantly-Nuer refugees crossing into Ethiopia for fear of ethnically-targeted attacks; similar movements reported into Sudan after clashes around Bentiu. UNMISS report 8 May found reasonable grounds to believe crimes against humanity committed by both sides; UNSG Ban 12 May urged creation of Special Tribunal to investigate; UNMISS staff reportedly assaulted and detained mid-month in Juba. U.S. Sec State Kerry 1 May warned of possible genocide; new UNMISS mandate enables regional force deployment and prioritizes protection of civilians; U.S. 6 May announced first sanctions against head of presidential guard and SPLA-IO military leader. UN humanitarian chief Amos 20 May warned 4mn threatened by famine, urged warring parties to allow humanitarian access.

South Sudan

  |  1 May 2014

Deteriorated

Fighting between govt and SPLA-in-Opposition (SPLA-IO) and targeting of civilians on basis of ethnicity escalated as both parties continued to trade allegations of ceasefire violations. Over 200 killed and 400 wounded during 15-16 April SPLA-IO capture of Bentiu; UN 21 April reported targeted ethnic killings, said killings “game changer”; SPLA-IO 22 April denied accusations, blamed retreating govt forces. Armed youths 17 April attacked UNMISS base sheltering nearly 5,000 displaced in Bor, Jonglei, killing at least 58 and injuring 98; attackers reportedly targeted civilians on basis of ethnicity; UN said attack “war crime”. UN 23 April threatened sanctions; UN human rights chief Pillay and Special Envoy for Prevention of Genocide Adama Dieng visited 28-30 April, met with SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar and President Kiir, Pillay condemned “apparent lack of concern displayed” by both. UN aid convoy attacked 24 April in Upper Nile, perpetrators not identified. Kiir 23 April replaced Nuer army and Bor Dinka intelligence chiefs with Bahr el Ghazal Dinka. IGAD 28 April announced resumption of peace talks after several weeks’ adjournment; mediators 7 April agreed to exclude 7 former SPLM detainees (“SPLM 7”) from negotiations. Govt 25 April released 4 remaining treason suspects, dropped charges; 4 reportedly prevented from leaving country. IGAD Ceasefire Monitoring and Verification Teams dispatched 1 April; ongoing discussions over deployment and mandate of IGAD Protection and Deterrence Force. U.S. President Obama 3 April authorised possible sanctions against anyone inciting or committing violence, failing to engage constructively in peace talks, interfering with humanitarian operations; specific govt and SPLA-IO targets not yet identified. SPLM 5 April announced Intra-Party Dialogue Forum, sponsored by South African and Ethiopian ruling parties; discussions postponed until after IGAD parties reconvene.

South Sudan

  |  1 Apr 2014

Unchanged

Armed conflict between govt and SPLM/A-in-Opposition continued despite Jan ceasefire agreement, including fierce clashes over Malakal late month. Second round of talks between govt and SPLM/A-in-Opposition led by former VP Riek Machar ended with no breakthrough: govt continued to demand return of 7 released detainees to Juba for trial; opposition continue to demand withdrawal of Ugandan and others foreign forces. Third round of talks opened 26 March with both govt and opposition threatening boycotts; parties unable to agree on Declaration of Principles; IGAD 31 March requested suspension of talks for 1 month. IGAD 13 March approved Protection and Deterrent Force (PDF), though mandate and composition still unclear, may include Uganda. Security officials in Lakes State 6 March intercepted 11 UN trucks transporting UNMISS firearms and uniforms; govt accused UNMISS of plotting to arm opposition; VP James Wani Igga 10 March led protest against UNMISS in Juba, called for resignation of UN SRSG and UNMISS head Hilde Johnson. EU and 10 states 28 March issued statement reiterating support for UNMISS, condemning obstruction by govt and opposition forces. UNOCHA 29 March reported over 1 million displaced by conflict so far.

South Sudan

  |  1 Mar 2014

Deteriorated Risk Alert

Violence escalated ahead of rainy season despite 23 Jan ceasefire with reports of atrocities on both sides; tens of thousands fled fighting. Second round of talks between govt and “SPLM/A-in-Oppostion”, including “SPLM 7” released from detention last month, have not begun; SPLM/A-in-Opposition leader and former VP Riek Machar reiterated calls for release of 4 remaining political detainees currently charged with treason, withdrawal of Ugandan forces. Govt and SPLM/A-in-Opposition forces continued to clash; SPLM/A-in-Opposition 21 Feb took control of Malakal; currently moving towards oil-producing areas in Upper Nile. Govt increasingly fiscally unstable, threatening non-payment of salaries to soldiers. UNMISS late Feb reported civilians targeted by both sides; UN OCHA said 740,000 displaced by conflict, FAO issued famine warning. 

South Sudan

  |  1 Feb 2014

Deteriorated Risk Alert

Govt 28 Jan announced treason charges against 7 opposition politicians including former VP Riek Machar over alleged Dec coup attempt, raising fears over fate of ceasefire agreed 23 Jan between govt and armed opposition following IGAD mediation. Machar said treason charges were govt attempt to derail peace process, called for President Kiir’s resignation. 23 Jan deal included agreement on release of political detainees held by govt but failed to address underlying causes of conflict; 7 of 11 detainees released to Kenya 29 Jan, other 4 to stand trial for treason; govt late Jan said 4 detainees would be released in time to participate in peace talks scheduled to begin 7 Feb. Armed opposition, govt late-Jan accused each other of violating ceasefire; UN 27 Jan called for “robust” monitoring of ceasefire. Ongoing clashes in Unity State forced thousands to flee late-Jan. Fighting continued throughout IGAD mediation as govt forces backed by Ugandan army retook major towns seized by armed opposition in Dec including Bor 18 Jan, oil capital Bentiu 10 Jan and Malakal 20 Jan. AU 16 Jan affirmed commitment to begin investigation of rights abuses; UN ASG for Human Rights Ivan Šimonovic visited 17 Jan, said both sides committed atrocities. UN estimates 770,000 displaced in fighting since Dec 2013; nearly 70,000 inside UN bases. UN USG for Humanitarian Affairs Valerie Amos visited late-Jan, highlighted dire humanitarian situation. David Yau Yau, Murle rebel leader, signed peace agreement with govt late-Jan. 

South Sudan

  |  2 Jan 2014

Deteriorated Risk Alert

S Sudan on cusp of civil war after President Kiir accused former VP Riek Machar of attempted coup 17 Dec; UN reported over 1,000 killed, 180,000 displaced by escalating violence. Clashes began in Juba, rapidly spread to Unity and Jonglei states. Violence particularly heavy in Bor, Jonglei, where AU 23 Dec said “war crimes” had been committed: Machar claimed Ugandan jets backing Kiir’s forces bombed Bor 21 Dec; Bor has changed hands 3 times, currently under control of rebel forces “loyal” to Machar. Machar 19 Dec reportedly called on army to oust Kiir; rebel troops 22 Dec took Bentiu, capital of oil-rich Unity state. Regional FMs 20 Dec, mediators 21 Dec met with President Kiir to discuss crisis; Rebecca Garang, John Garang’s widow, met with Kiir 21 Dec but no breakthrough. Govt 27 Dec pledged to observe immediate ceasefire; Machar agreed to talks mediated by regional peace and security body Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD); talks began 2 Jan in Ethiopia. UNSC 24 Dec increased peacekeeping force to 12,500, called for “immediate cessation of hostilites”, dialogue. UN evacuated all non-essential staff; 2 UNMISS peacekeepers killed in attack on Aboko UN base.

South Sudan

  |  2 Dec 2013

Unchanged

Early Nov results of unilateral unofficial referendum on Abyei status held by Ngok Dinka 27-30 Oct showed 99.98% of voters in favour of joining S Sudan; Sudan dismissed results, S Sudan govt has not officially endorsed results. UN 25 Nov extended Abyei peacekeeping mission to May 2014. President Kiir 20 Nov met Sudan President Bashir on sidelines of Africa-Arab summit, discussed bilateral relations. Dr Lam Akol, chairman of SPLM-DC who ran against President Kiir in 2010 elections, 2 Nov returned from self-imposed exile in Khartoum. UN SRSG Hilde Johnson 18 Nov said S Sudan “at crossroads”, warned that despite some positive signs, continuing deadly inter-communal conflict, abuses by security forces and challenges in extending govt authority could threaten security. 5 killed 29 Nov in civilian attack on security forces in Unity state. LRA rebels reportedly attacked 5 villages in W Equatoria state late Nov, killing 3.

South Sudan

  |  1 Nov 2013

Unchanged

Media reported rumours rebel leader David Yau Yau in talks with govt; Murle elders and former rebels who have already accepted President Kiir’s amnesty offer reportedly serving as facilitators. Nearly 80 reportedly killed in rebel attack in Jonglei state mid-month. Govt continued to encourage return of displaced Ngok Dinka to Abyei, pressured AU to go ahead with proposed referendum or refer case to UNSC; Ngok Dinka tribe held unilateral referendum, voted to join S Sudan.

South Sudan

  |  1 Oct 2013

Unchanged

President Kiir 23 Sept suggested 2015 general elections may be delayed, cited lack of funds for census and completion of new constitution. Kiir early Sept visited Khartoum, discussed post-secession issues; Sudanese President Bashir agreed not to close oil pipeline. Govt continued to urge Abyei communities to return to region, register and prepare for planned Oct referendum on status of region; AU 24 Sept urged Sudan and S Sudan to refrain from any unilateral actions including holding of referendum, 27 Sept urged countries to “urgently” restart talks. Ministry of Oil and Petroleum early-Sept announced S Sudan received $969mn since resuming oil production in April, 20% paid to Sudan govt.

South Sudan

  |  1 Sep 2013

Unchanged

Lawmakers 24 Aug unanimously endorsed parliamentary speaker James Wani Igga as new VP; parliament 25 Aug delayed election of new speaker after failing to reach consensus on Igga’s replacement. UNSC 23 Aug condemned attacks on civilians in Jonglei state, called for humanitarian access. Dozen of SPLA officers reportedly jailed mid-Aug for role in human rights abuses in Jonglei; President Kiir 25 Aug announced investigation into abuses. Rebel David Yau Yau responded positively to Kiir’s renewed offer of amnesty, but demanded “international participation” in peace talks, notably by UNMISS. Hundreds protested 25 Aug in Juba against deteriorating security following killing of 2 police officers in Nyakurona West 24 Aug.

South Sudan

  |  1 Aug 2013

Deteriorated

Security deteriorated in Jonglei where fresh fighting between Lou Nuer and Murle early July left scores dead and hundreds injured, and attacks by rebels led by David Yau Yau continued in Pibor county. Media reported several rebel commanders killed, David Yau Yau wounded, SPLM captured military base. Human Rights Watch accused SPLM of abuses against civilians in anti-insurgency operations in Jonglei, failing to stop Lou Nuer youth mobilising against Murle. President Kiir 23 July dismissed VP Riek Machar and all cabinet and deputy ministers following increased tensions within ruling SPLM, 31 July announced new cabinet members. Govt mid-July announced plans to shut down oil production following Sudanese President Bashir’s threat to close pipelines (see Sudan); 23 July said Sudan decision “unjustifiable” and “material breach” of Sept 2012 cooperation agreement.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jul 2013

Unchanged

Tensions with Sudan over oil, rebels continued (see Sudan). Upper Nile rebels led by Johnson Olonyi 13 June met with SPLA leaders, accepted govt amnesty. Médecins sans Frontières 14 June said govt blocking aid delivery by not allowing agencies to leave cities; Human Rights Watch accused security forces of detaining over 130 civilians without charge, other rights abuses. President Kiir mid-June dismissed Ministers of Finance Minister and Cabinet Affairs, accused of corruption.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jun 2013

Unchanged

Govt accused Khartoum of involvement in 4 May killing of Abyei former Chief Kuol Deng Kuol and UNISFA peacekeeper. Govt 21 May said oil production halved in face of new “problems” exporting through Sudan; 27 May said oil will arrive in Port Sudan mid-June. Army 20 May retook Boma Town in Jonglei state, seized 7 May by David Yau Yau rebels; U.S. and several European states called on govt to find political solution to conflict. UN 31 May said 23,500 have fled fighting in Jonglei state. Members of security forces reportedly involved in looting in Pibor county. UN SRSG Johnson 27 May said UN peacekeepers lack capacity to protect civilians in Pibor. President Kiir 7 May dismissed Ajonge Perpetuar, deputy head of legal drafting team, and Elias Nyamlell Wako, deputy FM, following announcement that he will no longer tolerate criticism by members of his cabinet. UNAMID peacekeeping mandate extended by 6 months.

South Sudan

  |  1 May 2013

Unchanged

Talks with Sudan 23-25 April resulted in agreement to open or reopen 10 border corridors, establish Joint Security Committee (JSC) to deal with rebel demands and other disputes; UNSG Ban welcomed direct talks and agreements. Oil production resumed 7 April following March agreement. Clashes in Jonglei continued; a dozen people killed in attack on UNMISS peacekeepers 9 April including 5 UN troops. Both SPLA and Yau Yau rebels denied responsibility; UNMISS deployed additional forces to region. SPLA soldier and 3 rebels killed in attack on Pibor town by Yau Yau rebels 30 April. SSLA rebels surrendered 26 April following govt announcement of presidential amnesty. Over 20 killed mid-April in clashes in Eastern Equatoria, including 4 medical staff reportedly killed by security forces.

South Sudan

  |  1 Apr 2013

Unchanged

Govt 12 March signed security agreement with Sudan; both govts mid-month began withdrawal of troops from demilitarised border zone. Govt 26 March said oil flow will resume soon; Sudan and S Sudan central banks 30 March agreed on methodology and experts to facilitate collection of Khartoum oil revenues. Reports late month suggested Khartoum has abandoned demand for 50% of administrative positions in Abyei administration, prompting hopes long-delayed referendum will be held. SPLA repeatedly clashed with rebels in Jonglei state; over 150 rebels, 20 govt troops reportedly killed 26 March in Pibor county.

South Sudan

  |  1 Mar 2013

Unchanged

UN SRSG Johnson 19 Feb visited Jonglei state, urged communities to break cycle of violence following 8 Feb killing of over 100, abduction of unknown number in attack by rebels loyal to David Yau Yau. Lou Nuer and Great Akobo Youth Association protested attack, called for greater protection, decisive action in disarming Murle. Govt accused Sudan of bombing disputed area Jaw, at border of Unity state, 14 Feb; UN SRSG confirmed incident. SPLA early Feb accused Sudan of building up forces along disputed border, reinforced Upper Nile state border garrisons. Amnesty International accused govt of rights violations, unlawful detentions.

South Sudan

  |  1 Feb 2013

Unchanged

Talks with Sudan continued: Presidents 6 Jan agreed to abide by timelines for security, border and oil deals but following a week of talks mid-month both sides accused each other of making new demands. Plans to resume oil exports delayed after negotiations failed to reach agreement on demilitarised zone. Govt official 30 Jan said Sudan attempting to wage “economic war” on S Sudan. Govt 22 Jan dismissed over 30 top army officers, including all 6 deputy chiefs of staff, denied link to rumoured coup attempt. SPLA 26-27 Jan clashed with former Yau Yau rebels in Pibor town, Jonglei state, displacing thousands. Police 24 Jan arrested traditional leader in Warrap state accused of recruiting and establishing training camp for personal vigilante group. At least 2 killed 24 Jan when SPLA clashed with armed pastoralists in Lakes state.

South Sudan

  |  30 Dec 2012

Unchanged

At least 10 killed 8-9 Dec when protesters clashed with police in Wau town following move of local govt seat to nearby Bagarre. Relatives of those killed reportedly kidnapped 28 pro-govt Dinka tribespeople; discovery of 6 Dinka bodies 19 Dec reignited violence, protests. Many residents fled town, govt flew in police reinforcements from Juba, UN deployed peacekeepers. New round of talks with Sudan reached agreement on steps toward border security (see Sudan). 29 militia fighters, 5 soldiers reportedly killed mid-month in army operation to combat ethnic militias in Jonglei, targeting fighters led by self-proclaimed prophet Dak Kueth. Journalist critical of govt shot dead 5 Dec outside home in Juba; President Kiir announced full investigation, UN condemned killing. Army 21 Dec shot down UN peacekeeping helicopter, killing 4 crew members, said it mistook it for Sudanese plane.

South Sudan

  |  1 Dec 2012

Unchanged

President Kiir 26 Nov said oil production, scheduled to resume 15 Nov, delayed due to new Khartoum security demands that Juba disarm SPLM-N. Govt 23 Nov condemned Khartoum for “continuous unprovoked attacks” on Bahr el-Ghazal region, killing and injuring scores of civilians and displacing over 900; Khartoum denied responsibility. 19 rebels, 1 soldier reportedly killed 19 Nov in SPLA attack on base of David Yau Yau rebels in Jonglei. Govt 4 Nov expelled UN human rights investigator.

South Sudan

  |  1 Nov 2012

Unchanged

Parliament 16 Oct ratified border and oil deal with Sudan; hundreds 15 Oct protested against demilitarisation of contested border areas. Govt 18 Oct ordered oil companies to resume production, ending 9-month shutdown. Govt 23 Oct expressed disappointment over AUHIP call to extend Abyei mediation efforts, said extension not consistent with AU roadmap, UN Resolution 2060. 5, including soldier, killed 19 Oct by unknown gunmen in Bor county, Jonglei. Amnesty International 3 Oct accused security forces of widespread abuses in Jonglei disarmament campaign. Govt 24 Oct announced plans to mediate Ethiopia-Eritrea border dispute. VP Machar 19 Oct dismissed rumours of coup plot following 11 Oct arrest of senior military officer and visit by President Kiir to SPLA HQ, speech warning against coups.

South Sudan

  |  1 Oct 2012

Unchanged

President Kiir 23-25 Sept met with Sudanese President Bashir, 27 Sept signed deal on demilitarised zone, oil, no agreement reached on disputed Abyei region. Govt 14 Sept issued revision of oil-exploration rights, divided Total license area into 3 blocks citing Total’s failure to expedite exploration. UN peacekeepers 24 Sept reportedly witnessed Sudanese airdrop to rebel Yau Yau in Jonglei state.

South Sudan

  |  1 Sep 2012

Unchanged

AU mediator Mbeki 3 Aug announced breakthrough deal on oil transportation fees; Juba, Khartoum said implementation of deal linked to progress in other areas; new round of talks scheduled early Sept. Abyei Joint Oversight Committee 10 Aug established peaceful coexistence pact; govt 24 Aug accused Sudan of keeping troops in Abyei with aim of provoking war. At least 24 SPLA soldiers killed 22 Aug, 30 Aug in clashes with militia led by former army general David Yau Yau in Pibor county; Jonglei governor said attack part of wider rebellion. Human Rights Watch sharply criticised Jonglei disarmament campaign in 23 Aug letter to President Kiir, reported widespread torture, abuse; reports corroborated by UNMISS 24 Aug.

South Sudan

  |  1 Aug 2012

Unchanged

S Sudan 9 July marked first anniversary of independence with series of celebrations. Month saw increasing signs of economic crisis as foreign currency supplies ran low, consumer prices continued to rise, infrastructure projects continued to stall due to shortage of funds. Negotiations with Sudan on security, oil, border demarcation failed ahead of 2 Aug deadline (see Sudan).

South Sudan

  |  1 Jul 2012

Unchanged

Govt 1 June said complaint filed with UNSC against Sudan for continued presence in disputed Abyei, 13 June said seeking international arbitration for border dispute. UNSC 18 June welcomed resumption of negotiations, reduction of violence, called on Sudan to withdraw police from Abyei. Talks with Sudan 4, 21 June failed to achieve real progress after negotiators disagreed on delimitation of Safe Demilitarised Border Zone. UN 14 June announced investigation into reports police abducted, raped women during Jonglei disarmament; UNMISS 24 June released report into intercommunal violence, criticised “longstanding impunity”. Justice Minister Mohamed Dousa appointed new war crimes prosecutor for Darfur.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jun 2012

Unchanged

UNSC 2 May adopted resolution calling for withdrawal of S Sudan and Sudan armed forces from disputed areas, establishment of joint border security mechanisms, endorsed AUHIP-mediated negotiations, threatened sanctions against Sudan, S Sudan if they fail to comply with AU roadmap for talks; govt 29 May said Sudan bombarded Werguet, Majak Woi border, Khartoum denied attack; talks resumed 29 May. UN Human Rights chief Pillay visited 8-12 May, called for continued vigilance in combating human rights violations, criticised recent bombing raids by Sudan. UNSG Ban 12 May commended S Sudan on withdrawal of “special police” forces from Abyei, called on Khartoum to do same, establish Abyei Area Administration. UNSC 17 May extended mandate of Abyei peacekeeping force by 6 months. Aid group Medecins Sans Frontiers accused military of rape, torture, extrajudicial killing of Muerle tribe members during disarmament campaign initiated March 2012. Jonglei state tribal leaders 5 May signed agreement to end cycle of inter-ethnic clashes.

South Sudan

  |  1 May 2012

Deteriorated

President Kiir 24 April said Sudan had “declared war” following continued airstrikes; AU 24 April gave Sudan and S Sudan 3 months to reach deal, end fighting, or face “appropriate measures” following continued deterioration in relations throughout April (see Sudan). S Sudan 4 April claimed forces shot down Sudanese jet over Unity State. Govt 25 April released 14 Sudanese soldiers in move hoped to ease tensions, soldier alleged beatings, mistreatment; govt same day accused Khartoum of bombing Unity state. Govt 28 April said attack by Khartoum-backed rebels in Upper Nile state repulsed, 21 killed; 29 April said committed to an "immediate cessation of all hostilities" with Sudan, would withdraw all police from Abyei, in letter to UN.

South Sudan

  |  1 Apr 2012

Deteriorated

Clashes between SPLA and Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) 26 March sparked fears of return to war; SPLA accused SAF of bombing disputed Jau, Pan Akuach, Teshwin areas near Helgig, said SPLA acted in self-defence. SPLA said SAF 30 March bombed SPLA border positions, SAF denied. Sudan-S Sudan AUHIP-facilitated negotiations 13 March had reached agreement on nationality, border demarcation process, renewed commitment to negotiations on outstanding issues including oil. At least 63 wounded 9 March when gunmen attacked Lou Nuer cattle camps in Akobo and Wanding areas near border with Ethiopia; UNMISS dispatched patrol and medical teams, condemned attacks, urged Jonglei state communities to end violence; UNHCR announced estimated 15,000 fleeing Jonglei violence have entered Ethiopia since mid-Feb.

South Sudan

  |  1 Mar 2012

Unchanged

Tensions with Sudan continued throughout month: Secretary General of SPLM 13 Feb said Khartoum had seized another 2.4mn barrels of southern oil; govt 15 Feb threatened permanent closure of oil pipeline to Sudan Red Sea port following failed 6 day AU-mediated talks, further talks scheduled for 24 Feb delayed to 6 March. Juba 17 Feb warned Chinese companies operating in South faced expulsion if found complicit in Khartoum’s oil “theft”, 21 Feb expelled head of Chinese Petrodar oil company for “non cooperation”. Juba 17 Feb introduced set of austerity measures to counteract loss of revenue due to oil production shutdown. Govt 14 Feb accused Sudan of bombing disputed Jau town 11 Feb, after non-aggression pact signed in Ethiopia 10 Feb. Senior UN Humanitarian Affairs official Valerie Amos early Feb visited Jonglei, expressed concern over ongoing internal violence; 37 killed 3 Feb when armed men opened fire at mediation meeting in Unity state; Dinka Bor youth 8 Feb reportedly attacked Murle community in Manyibol, Pibor county, killing 9 and injuring 11. Mid-Feb 3-day peace conference bringing together communities along Sudan-S Sudan border, including nomadic Missiriya and Dinka Malual, called for international assistance resolving border disputes; UN SRSG for S Sudan and UNMISS head Hilde Johnson called on warring ethnic groups to find peaceful solutions. Govt 28 Feb announced ceasefire, peace agreement with former George Athor rebels.

South Sudan

  |  1 Feb 2012

Deteriorated

Relations with Khartoum further deteriorated; govt mid-Jan initiated shutdown of all oil production after AU-facilitated oil talks faltered and following additional seizures of South Sudan oil by Khartoum; “thefts” allegedly worth $815m since Dec 2011. Air raid by Sudanese armed forces on Upper Nile State refugee camp 23 Jan wounded at least 1. Scores killed, thousands displaced in continuing violence between Murle and Lou Nuer; Murle retaliatory attacks launched throughout Jan in Akobo, Uror and Duk Padiet counties. At least 70 reported killed in attack on Tonj East County, Warrap state, by armed youths from Mayendit County; govt accused Khartoum of arming militia. UNSRSG Hilde Johnson 19 Jan called for “redoubling of efforts” to curb violence, emphasised role of UN in deterring even greater violence, pledged additional UNMISS attention, called for additional troops. Govt 19 Jan said groups would be forcibly disarmed if necessary.

South Sudan

  |  2 Jan 2012

Deteriorated

Tensions with Sudan continued to escalate following Nov AU-mediated talks, due to reconvene Jan. Sudan and S Sudan armed forces clashed in disputed Jau territory early Dec. President Kiir 16 Dec accused Sudan of trying to destabilise country with cross-border militia raids, bombings; denied allegations S Sudan supporting militias fighting Sudanese Armed Forces in S Kordofan, Blue Nile states. Govt 21 Dec accused Khartoum of forcibly conscripting southern students; 29 Dec said Sudanese air raid killed 17 in Western Bahr al-Ghazal border state, Khartoum denied. Lou Nuer and Murle joint dialogue postponed to Jan amid escalating violence. At least 40 killed in clashes, cattle raiding in Jonglei early Dec; UN 26 Dec warned thousands of armed Lou Nuer youths planning attack on Murle tribe. VP Riek Machar 20 Dec announced rebel George Athor killed by SPLA following string of rebel attacks near state capital Bor and in Pigi county. U.S. early Dec amended economic sanctions against Sudan to allow U.S. investment in S Sudan oil market.

South Sudan

  |  1 Dec 2011

Deteriorated

North-South relations further deteriorated when Sudanese Armed Forces reportedly launched cross-border airstrikes on Maban County, Upper Nile State, and 10 Nov bombed Yida refugee camp, Unity state, killing 12; Khartoum denied. Negotiations with Sudan 25-30 Nov made no progress on oil and outstanding issues (See Sudan). Clashes between South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA) rebels and govt forces continued. SSLA 24 Nov claimed govt soldiers and officer captured, urged civilians and aid workers to evacuate Mayom, Unity State, ahead of planned attack. Militia with suspected ties to rebel George Athor 16 Nov attacked 3 villages in Jonglei killing 4; Athor 20 Nov said further violence likely after talks with President Kiir failed. 2 journalists released 19 Nov after 2 week illegal detention by security forces allegedly for publishing article criticising marriage of President Kiir’s daughter to Ethiopian national.

South Sudan

  |  1 Nov 2011

Unchanged

Leaders from at least 18 opposition parties 13 Oct reported they were considering forming single opposition party. Govt 16 Oct urged international community to set deadline for Sudan withdrawal from Abyei following Khartoum declaration that they would not pull out troops unless 20 June deal on managing region is fully implemented. Minister for defence and veteran affairs John Koang Nyuon 24 Oct arrived in Jonglei state capital Bor to discuss security situation, disarmament; said civilian disarmament will start after rainy season ends in Nov. Rebel South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA) 27 Oct threatened to attack Unity state govt, gave UN agencies and aid groups one week to leave. Around 80 killed in rebel SSLA attack on Mayom county, Unity state, 29 Oct; army claimed rebels expelled from county.

South Sudan

  |  1 Oct 2011

Unchanged

Sudan, South Sudan 9 Sept reached agreement to ease border tensions in Abyei (see Sudan). Per unresolved dispute with Khartoum over oil fees, official 9 Sept announced govt intention to pay in arrears for use of Sudan’s oil facilities until parties reach final decision on transit fees. Opposition United Democratic Salvation Front (UDSF) head David Biel Jal arrested 2 Sept after criticising composition of new cabinet. Govt 23 Sept re-committed to DDR program, announced plans to demobilise 150,000 soldiers. Signalling persistent North-South tensions, official 24 Sept threatened to close border with Sudan from Dec in retaliation to blockade imposed by Khartoum.

South Sudan

  |  1 Sep 2011

Unchanged

Retaliatory cattle raids by Murle tribesmen on 3 ethnic Nuer villages in Jonglei State 18 Aug left at least 600 dead, 200 possibly abducted, up to 30,000 cattle reportedly stolen, increased fears for instability. Rebel leader Pater Gadet agreed 3 Aug ceasefire with President Kiir; declared intention to integrate forces into S Sudan Army, though process incomplete. Other rebel SSLA forces still outstanding. Several killed in land mine incidents in Unity state. Army 25 Aug reported clashes with rebel generals George Athor, Gordon Kong in Upper Nile State; scores dead. Govt 1 Aug reached tentative agreement with Sudan over border security (see Sudan); 27 Aug announced new 29-member cabinet. Amid disputes over oil fees, Sudan 6 Aug released S Sudanese oil shipment held over customs duties. Govt 15 Aug joined AU, offered to contribute peacekeeping troops for Somalia. UN 3 Aug criticised S Sudan for jailing journalist reporting on alleged rape of foreign aid worker; 26 Aug condemned police beating of senior rights official.

South Sudan

  |  1 Aug 2011

Unchanged

South Sudan 9 July declared independence, amid swift international recognition of new state; UNGA 14 July admitted nation as member. Speaking alongside other international figures at celebrations in Juba, Sudan President Bashir highlighted commitment to resolve outstanding issues of Comprehensive Peace Agreement. New peacekeeping mission UNMISS launched as UNMIS draws down. Govt 6 July raised possibility of exporting oil through E Africa, bypassing Sudan. SPLM Sec Gen 25 July accused Sudan of “economic war” by introducing new currency early. Parliamentary opposition leader Onyoti Nyikwec 7 July accused security forces of beating, detaining opposition members. Prominent journalist Abuzar Al Amin sentenced 14 July to year in prison for “undermining the constitution”, after criticising govt. Unity State rebel leader Gatluak Gai killed 23 July, days after signing peace deal with SPLA; SPLA denied involvement, blamed Gai’s deputy. Militias allegedly allied to rebel leader Peter Gadet late June attacked Turalei, Warrap State; 11 killed.

South Sudan

  |  1 Jul 2011

Deteriorated

Continued clashes between N and S Sudan over flashpoint region of Abyei despite mid-June agreement (See N Sudan). In spill-over fighting SAF forces 9-13 June bombed north part of Unity State; numerous casualties. UN warned deteriorating situation creating serious food shortages in Unity State, said more than 200,000 displaced, 1,556 killed in S Sudan this year. Attacks by cattle raiders 9-13 June in Lakes State, and renegade General Peter Gadet 13 June in Warrap State reportedly left further 100 dead.  Rebel leader in Jonglei State David Yauyau 15 June signed ceasefire with govt of S Sudan (GoSS). President Bashir 22 June threatened to shut oil pipelines from S Sudan if GoSS does not hand over half of oil revenue or pay for pipeline use; S Sudan in favour of fees. High profile journalist Nhial Bol Aken said received threats from security services after criticising GoSS.

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CrisisWatch N°141

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