Reviewing options for peace in South Sudan

South Sudan needs more than a short-term political fix: it needs proper tools to promote inclusive and responsive structures of governance.

As South Sudan continues to witness intermittent armed violence, short- and medium-term options to address the conflict must be critically evaluated. Continued violence erodes the country’s capital, aggravates structural problems and polarises the population. When viewed against the backdrop of South Sudan’s history, prospects for durable peace appear far off. Of key importance is the need to develop a polity that confronts and reverses the country’s legacy of structural problems and partisanship. This calls for more than a short-term political fix of sharing positions: it calls for proper tools to promote inclusive and responsive structures of governance.

This report, examining the mood of a country that holds the top spot in the Fragile States Index, is based on field research conducted in South Sudan in April and May 2014.

About the author

Emmanuel Kisiangani joined the ISS in 2010 as a senior researcher in the African Conflict Prevention Programme. He holds a PhD in political studies and international relations from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, an MA in diplomacy and international studies from the University of Nairobi and a BA Hons (philosophy and linguistics) from Egerton University. Before joining ISS, Kisiangani worked as a senior researcher at the Institute for Global Dialogue’s Africa Programme.

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Development partners
This report has been made possible with support from the government of the Netherlands. The ISS is also grateful for support from the other members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the governments of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Japan, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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