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Thread: South Sudan: Watching a fragile nation

  1. #181
    Council Member M-A Lagrange's Avatar
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    Default Back to square 1

    UN offers mediation between renegade General Athor and South Sudan

    In October, just three months prior to the conduct of the January vote on self determination for the people of South Sudan, President Kiir issued an executive order pardoning Athor and his forces. The presidential order also covered other militia leaders including Gabriel Tanyinyang whose forces clashes several times in Malakal town, capital of the Upper Nile state, resulting into scores being killed and several others sustaining injuries.
    The order which received remarkable welcome from the general public was meant to reconcile political differences among political leaders and factions, in order to forge a way forward to achieving peace and stability in the region. However, the decree included some reservations demanding armed elements loyal to Athor to lay down their arms before joining the SPLA - a demand Athor viewed as not protecting the fate of his forces. Athor requested that the president amend the decree in order cover the fate of his forces and some of his political supporters.
    Additionally, the president formed a high level delegation committee compromising of two bishops and generals to discuss with him ways to end violence in the area. On 5 January 2011, the government signed the ceasefire with the SPLA allowing forces to withdraw from areas previously controlled by either side and recommended some of the sites as transitory assembly points.
    However, on 9 February 2011 spokesman of the renegade group, Dok James Puok, in an interview with Sudan Tribune from Juba accused the SPLA of having staged an attack on three different locations controlled by forces loyal to them. A charge SPLA spokesman, Colonel Phillip Aguer, in a separate interview with Sudan Tribune was quick to deny and accused Athor to having initiated the attack that resulted in the killing of 211 and wounding of several others on both sides.
    Speaking to Sudan Tribune on Monday night, Dok James Puok, who did not want to give his whereabouts, said they have been contacted by UNMIS with a proposal to mediate peace between them and the Government of South Sudan (GoSS).
    "The United Nations Mission in Sudan has contacted us with a proposal to mediate peace and we accepted. We are open to peace. We have never rejected any peaceful dialogue because this is what our people want", said Puok.
    Attempts made by Sudan Tribune on Monday to contact official spokesman of the GoSS, Marial Benjamin Bil, minister of information and broadcasting failed.
    http://www.sudantribune.com/UN-offer...-between,38076

    Can't remember which post it was but UNMIS already offered to mediate at the very early stage of the crisis.
    Let see this time how far this will go. But a question remain unanswered: with or without mediation, SPLA/M will have to find a path to open non violent political dialog in Sout Sudan. Otherwise, I do not see any reason for any polititian and un happy men to be to not to take arms and creat a militia.

  2. #182
    Council Member M-A Lagrange's Avatar
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    Default Cause I’m a hopeless optimistic guy…

    I was giving them 1 year before going down that road.

    Too bad.

    George Clooney's Satellite Sentinel Project warned of escalating violence in Sudan’s Abyei region, along the volatile border between North and South Sudan.
    The satellite photos show evidence of the intentional burning of the strategic border villages Maker Abior and Todach.
    The satellite project, in the report "Flashpoint: Abyei", also documented a significant increase in military activity by what appears to be the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF), which operate in South Kordofan state, as well as an apparent buildup of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in Abyei. The increased militarization of this area, including evidence of battle tanks and other heavy equipment, has increased tensions between the two sides.
    http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/n...violence-sudan

    Well done George! You probably took too much drugs to be president but on that one, you did hit the target!

  3. #183
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Fragile and yet to be a nation state

    A commentary on Africa's next new country:http://www.opendemocracy.net/sam-car...-fragile-state

    Tries to address:
    Despite continuing North-South tensions, intra-Southern fragility is now one of the most pressing concerns in Sudan, whether or not Khartoum is fuelling the flames of these insurrections. With independence due in just over two months, it needs addressing
    davidbfpo

  4. #184
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    Default North and South Sudant at the brink of war...again

    The situation in teh Abey region is deteriorating dramatically, with bands of thugs attacking even the UN. Seems as if the wors prediction become reality...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/25/wo...er=rss&emc=rss

  5. #185
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Terror in Abyei: FP Blog report

    An interesting, sad report:
    The first interviews with fleeing residents of this Sudanese border town make one thing clear: the regime in Khartoum knows exactly what it is doing.
    Link:http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...abyei?page=0,0

    There also a direct counter-attack in the 'Comments'.
    davidbfpo

  6. #186
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    Dear all,
    Could you explain me who fight whom in S.Sudan now? I have my colleges there and I worry about their security (they are civilians).
    Thank you.

  7. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yurii_K View Post
    Dear all,
    Could you explain me who fight whom in S.Sudan now? I have my colleges there and I worry about their security (they are civilians).
    Thank you.
    Her is a link to a RSS news feed of articles over the last month of fighting there. The feed will update itself continually. http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&gl...F-8&output=rss

  8. #188
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default At least there is some good news

    Aidan Hartley has been wandering around South Sudan and writes a short column. It ends with:
    ...I sip a cold brew from Juba’s brand-new brewery that is now selling to a people who have at last gained their liberty.
    Link:http://www.spectator.co.uk/columnist...ild-life.thtml

    Perhaps he is preparing a TV documentary?
    davidbfpo

  9. #189
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default South Sudan: this time refugees from the Sudan

    A humanitarian tragedy is unfolding in a remote corner of South Sudan, the world's newest nation – and one of its poorest -- as it prepares to celebrate its first anniversary of independence....Emergency teams admit to being overwhelmed by an influx of 120,000 refugees from fighting which continues to rage across the border in Sudan's Blue Nile State. The Khartoum government has been attacking African tribal groups who got trapped on the wrong side of a line on a map when the two countries split last July
    Link:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...ail&utm_medium

    Yes this post could go in the new Sudan 2012 thread, but sits better here.

    More http://www.msf.org.uk/South_Sudan_Ap...ontent=websitedetails and a map on:
    davidbfpo

  10. #190
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    Default South Sudan Crisis

    http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2013/07/212383.htm

    Political Situation in South Sudan
    July 24, 2013

    The United States is deeply concerned by the risk to stability posed by South Sudanese President Salva Kiir Mayardit’s decision to dismiss Vice President Riek Machar, the members of his cabinet, deputy ministers, and a number of police brigadier generals. President Kiir has also relieved Pa'gan Amum, the Secretary General of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement.
    http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.as...=#.UrZZ-Y2A1Ms

    South Sudan: assailants attack UN base sheltering desperate civilians

    19 December 2013 – Unknown assailants attacked a United Nations base in South Sudan today, possibly killing or injuring civilians who had sought refuge inside during violent clashes between Government forces and rebels, with the number of people fleeing to UN installations now reaching 35,000.
    “UNMISS is doing everything it can, within its means and in a very fluid situation, to protect civilians, as well as United Nations and international personnel on the ground,” a statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson said. “There are indications that civilians may have been killed and wounded in the attack, but this remains to be verified. Should these reports prove true, those responsible must be held accountable for their crimes.”

    At the time, 43 Indian peacekeepers, six UN police advisers and two UN civilian staffers were present at the base. About 30 South Sudanese had sought shelter from the turmoil plaguing areas of Akobo County, the Mission said in a statement.

  11. #191
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    Default U.S. military takes fire

    http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...72022785976430

    U.S. Military Aircraft Hit By Gunfire in South Sudan

    Four Wounded on Mission to Evacuate Americans From Town Seized by Renegade Troops


    The three Osprey aircraft were hit by gunfire as they approached the landing zone at Bor, a town seized by renegade troops earlier this week, said Wayne Perry, a spokesman for the U.S. Africa Command in Stuttgart, Germany. He said it wasn't clear what group had fired on the aircraft. The Osprey is a plane that turns into a helicopter for takeoff and landing.
    The White House reported that the U.S. service members who were wounded are in stable condition.

    Bor has been the scene of heavy fighting since Wednesday. On Thursday a U.N. base there was overrun by thousands of armed men. The attackers killed two Indian peacekeepers and at least 20 civilians, the U.N. peacekeeping mission said.
    The American citizens in Bor aren't in immediate danger, Mr. Perry said, adding that he didn't know when the next evacuation attempt would take place. He didn't know how many U.S. citizens were stuck in the town.

    He said the troops taking part in the evacuation mission were separate from a force of 45 that President Barack Obama ordered to South Sudan earlier in the week to help safeguard the embassy and citizens in Juba.

  12. #192
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Bill:

    Can and/or do the Osprey's have door guns or ramp guns so they can shoot back?
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  13. #193
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    Carl,

    They can mount a weapon on the ramp, and if memory serves me right they have door guns in the Air Force (Special Operations) version which is the CV-22, not sure what the Marines mount on their version of the V-22 which is the MV-22. They were just coming into Afghanistan during my tour there, so while I saw them, I never flew in one. No doubt lots of guys in SWJ have first hand experience with them and can answer your question. I do recall during the V-22 troubled development phase that one of the issues was how they should be armed.

    Technology is always improving, so this comment may be outdated, but it has been my experience that suppressive fire from door gunners (both window and ramp) is just that, it is suppressive fire that isn't very accurate. I know you don't want to hear this, but if someone is shooting at you from within a crowd of unarmed civilians your options are somewhat limited, unless the rules of engagement allow that type of response.

    I don't know if SOF or Marines mounted the non-combatant evacuation (NEO) in Sudan, so I don't what version of V-22 went in, and since the weapons are optional, I don't know if they had weapons mounted. Despite the troubled development period, by most accounts the V-22 does give us some pretty good capabilities we didn't have previously.

    video link showing tail mounted weapon

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZN1EBN5z1I
    Last edited by Bill Moore; 12-23-2013 at 01:08 AM. Reason: add link, fix grammar

  14. #194
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    A short backgrounder, from someone who has been working in South Sudan, this summary says enough:
    A power-grab by rebels would come with huge civilian casualties and also set a bad precedent in a country with long ethnic rivalries, lacking a professional military and with an armed civilian population.
    Link:http://www.opendemocracy.net/john-on...acy-of-neglect

    I note the UN peacekeepers have taken casualties, as they are Indian soldiers one wonders if this will affect the debate back home on participation. India contributes a third of UNMISS military mission, with battallion groups from: Kenya, Mongolia, Nepal & Rwanda. I note there are (were) four US military observers and twelve police officers.

    BBC is now reporting the rebels have seized control of the province where the oil is. The link has six useful map:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-25487084
    davidbfpo

  15. #195
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    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/w...n-war/4166537/

    Americans evacuated from South Sudan battleground

    About 380 Americans and 300 citizens of other nations have been evacuated in recent days to Nairobi and other locations on four chartered flights and five military aircraft, Psaki said. An unknown number of people have left on their own and an unknown number remain in Bor and surrounding rural areas.

    "The U.S. government is doing everything possible to ensure the safety and security of United States citizens in South Sudan," the statement said. "We are working with our allies around the world to connect with and evacuate U.S. citizens as quickly and safely as possible."
    Looks like the UN conducted the majority of the NEO along with some U.S. civilian helicopters on contract in the region. Probably was the best option, but after all the hype (deserved or not) on Bengazi. I suspect the US government felt compelled to send U.S. forces quickly to prevent political backlash at home.

    http://gulfnews.com/news/world/other...=News_RSS_feed

    Key events in the brief history of South Sudan

    A brief and troubled history, so I'm sure the South Sudan watchers were not surprised by this eruption of violence.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-welco...n-south-sudan/

    U.S. welcomes birth of new nation, South Sudan

    "A proud flag flies over Juba and the map of the world has been redrawn," Mr. Obama said in a statement recognizing the new country. "These symbols speak to the blood that has been spilled, the tears that have been shed, the ballots that have been cast, and the hopes that have been realized by so many millions of people. The eyes of the world are on the Republic of South Sudan. And we know that southern Sudanese have claimed their sovereignty, and shown that neither their dignity nor their dream of self-determination can be denied."
    What else could the President say in a diplomatic setting like this? Congratulations on the stillborn birth of your nation?

    South Sudan's declaration of independence was achieved because of a U.S.-supported agreement brokered six years ago by the Bush administration, and the hope in Juba is that the U.N. (which authorized a peacekeeping force on Friday) and the U.S. will be able to find the resources to help South Sudan get on its feet.
    http://www.npr.org/2011/04/27/135773...up-south-sudan

    The U.S. Role In Setting Up South Sudan

    April 27, 2011


    U.S. Special Envoy to Sudan Princeton Lyman explains the U.S role in setting up the new country.
    This is a short read, and it was clear that Mr. Lyman had a realistic perspective in this interview.

    CONAN: The controversies include?

    Mr. LYMAN: Partly because of the opposition parties feel they were not part of the process, partly because they think the transition period of four years is too long and that there should be a government of national unity during that period, not simply a continuation of the present regime.

    CONAN: In the meantime, there are so many other institutions that have to be established: a legal system, you have to design a flag and currency and passports, a million things.

    Mr. LYMAN: A million things. And there is not a deep level of cadre in the south to handle all these things. They have to set up - as you say, they have to set up a central bank if they're going to have their own currency. They have to set up ministries at the state level, as well as the national level, to deliver services, create courts with the appropriate personnel, passports, as you say, establish treaty relationships as a new country with all the other countries with whom they're dealing - a tremendous amount of work. And they are working very hard at it, but it is quite challenging.

  16. #196
    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Hey Carl,
    There are 50s on the doors and even a Gatling gun on the fuselage

    and... you are well aware of what all that firepower doesn't do when a heard of gun slingers on the ground are shooting into the air ala Zairois...

    Must be a lot of money to be made in that country for 300 American idiots to stay there and spend our tax dollars to get them out

    Merry Christmas !

    Regards, Stan
    If you want to blend in, take the bus

  17. #197
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Moore View Post
    I know you don't want to hear this, but if someone is shooting at you from within a crowd of unarmed civilians your options are somewhat limited, unless the rules of engagement allow that type of response.
    Bill:

    I know a little about all that, so I don't mind hearing anything. Most is learned from things not wanted anyway.

    Stan:

    Merry Christmas too!
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  18. #198
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    There is not much room for optimism in this IISS Strategic Comment, another African nation retarded by its own politicians, warlords and others:https://www.iiss.org/en/publications...nt-strife-cd33

    This maybe behind a registration "wall".
    davidbfpo

  19. #199
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    Default UN under siege

    I don't watch this situation closely and thought the faction fighting had abated. Instead I learnt this:
    Peacekeepers from the U.N. Mission in South Sudan told their chief Hilde Johnson that people were flocking to UNMISS’ bases seeking protection. In the dark morning hours of Dec. 16, Johnson gave the order to let them in.

    The result, four month later, is siege warfare. Tens of thousands of refugees struggle to survive on U.N. bases protected by lightly-armed peacekeepers—while outside the compounds’ walls, killers plan their attacks. Conditions are dire. The future is uncertain. Nearly 100,000 lives are at stake.

    (Later) The U.N. has held out for four months. But as with any siege, the attackers have the advantage. It’s only a matter of time before money, supplies and political willpower run out.
    Link:https://medium.com/war-is-boring/119600c57b95
    davidbfpo

  20. #200
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Why does South Sudan matter so much to the US?

    I admit (again) events in South Sudan rarely reach my in-tray, but this headline caught my attention just:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-34083964

    The article gives a very short update on the current situation, with more on the American angle and a passing reference to the possible competition with China.
    davidbfpo

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