This report, based on extensive interviews conducted in Upper Nile state in January and February 2011, provides an overview of the state of play among South Sudan’s militias, which continue to be a critical challenge to securing a peaceful separation between North and South Sudan, and to the formation of a stable new state.
This report describes the experiences of former LRA who have recently returned to northern Uganda, explaining their reasons for leaving the LRA ranks and the challenges faced throughout the demobilization period, the current status of the remaining LRA groups in Sudan, Congo, CAR, and recommendations to align existing efforts and provide greater incentives to encourage more LRA fighters to defect, disarm and come home.
This report, based on interviews conducted by John Prendergast and Fidel Bafilemba in North Kivu in November 2010, provides an overview of the extent to which the minerals trade from eastern Congo today remains dominated by a mafia network of military, political, and business interests in Congo, its neighbors, and within the supply chains that connect the mines to international markets.
By John Prendergast and Fidel Bafilemba | Feb 1, 2011
For the southerners living in Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya, this week’s referendum on independence represents the best chance for returning to their homeland, and they are turning out in droves to vote.
This field dispatch, which is the second of two focusing on the destabilizing factors that exist within Unity state, examines the fears that remain of renewed attacks by SPLA breakaway officer Gatluak Gai.
This is the first of two field dispatches examining ongoing developments that threaten to destabilize Unity state, arguably one of the most strategic areas of South Sudan as it approaches a referendum.
Enough recently traveled to the bombing site in Kiir Adem, where aerial bombardments by the Sudanese Armed Forces of a South Sudanese army installation and surrounding community conjure up memories of Sudan’s long civil war and underscore the fragility of peace, especially along the country’s long, contested border.
Based on extensive research in all areas where the LRA operates, as well as in northern Uganda where the LRA originated, this paper aims to shed light on the nature of the “new” LRA in the hope that some of the information presented here can help to finally bring an end to the conflict that is taking place outside of Uganda but which continues to affect northern Uganda also.
Congolese President Joseph Kabila’s sudden ban on mineral exports from three eastern provinces has left many observers in the region questioning the effectiveness of the directive. It has also reportedly made life difficult for experts at Congo’s mining ministry in Kinshasa, who have been struggling with how to implement and enforce the ban.
Expectations for what the January referendum will bring are tremendously high among residents of Unity state in South Sudan. While anticipation for the vote has placated a population that has grown increasingly discontent with its government, these grievances have not gone away. If South Sudan receives its independence, the southern ruling party will have to address its people’s expectations or risk popular violence.