JUBA, South Sudan – As Sudan and South Sudan enter the final round of negotiations, the international community must pressure both countries to resolve all outstanding issues to secure sustained peace between the Sudans, according to a new Enough Project brief.
During the last round of negotiations, the two parties provisionally agreed to an economic deal that includes the resumption of oil shipments from South Sudan through Sudan. Elements of both parties and the international community could be tempted to move forward with an oil deal and avoid addressing politically challenging issues along Sudan and South Sudan’s border.
A comprehensive agreement on remaining post-secession issues—including the status of Abyei, border disputes and demarcation, security arrangements along the border, and citizenship—is fundamental to ensuring an end to conflict and long-term stability between the two Sudans.
“A unique window of opportunity exists in this final round of negotiations for Juba and Khartoum to agree on processes to address long-simmering sources of tension along the two countries’ shared border,” said Amanda Hsiao, the report’s author and Enough Project field researcher. “Since the two parties now have fewer pieces of leverage to negotiate with, sustained and coordinated international pressure will be critical to push Juba and Khartoum toward a comprehensive deal.”
The brief asserts that countries with leverage in the Sudans should push both parties to, at a minimum, agree on the centerline for a demilitarized border zone; the modalities of a referendum on Abyei, including voter eligibility; and a process for resolving border disputes. The brief argues that international actors should treat September 22,2012—the date when the facilitating African Union High-Level Implementation Panel will present its final report—as a hard deadline for all outstanding issues to be resolved.
Enough is a project of the Center for American Progress to end genocide and crimes against humanity. Founded in 2007, the Enough Project focuses on crises in Sudan, eastern Congo, and areas of Africa affected by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Enough’s strategy papers and briefings provide sharp field analysis and targeted policy recommendations based on a “3P” crisis response strategy: promoting durable peace, providing civilian protection, and punishing perpetrators of atrocities. Enough works with concerned citizens, advocates, and policy makers to prevent, mitigate, and resolve these crises. For more information, please visit www.enoughproject.org.
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