South Sudan Conflict Causes

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Explain the background and causes of the creation of the newest country in Africa, the Republic of South Sudan, which was completed in 2011. What are the reasons for current conflicts within South Sudan between 2013 and 2016?

Although South Sudan is one of the world’s newest nations, South Sudan has a history of conflict which includes Egypt’s imperialism, and the “Arab” north against the “African” south. In the late 1800s South Sudan was under joint British Egyptian rule and therefore was considered part of Anglo- Egyptian Sudan as well as the United Kingdom. Rulers such as Muhammad Ali worked to expand and imperialize Sudan under his reign, with attempts to unify the “Nile Valley”. In 1890s Britain regains control of Sudan through military
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The president had accused Machar and several others of attempting a coup d’etat which of course Machar denied, and then fled. After this, fighting broke out between the SPLM and the SPLM-in opposition, igniting the current civil war in South Sudan. During January 2014, the first ceasefire agreement was reached, however the fighting still continued and was then followed by more ceasefire agreements, being mediated by a group called IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development) which is an eight-country trade bloc in Africa. A peace agreement was signed in Ethiopia by both parties because the United Nations threatened to sanction both sides in August 2015. Machar returned to Juba, the capital city of South Sudan in 2016, and was appointed as vice president, only to have a second breakout of fighting happen within the city, causing Machar to flee and go into exile to Sudan. Currently, the SPLM-in opposition control small parts of south Sudan, whereas the government of South Sudan continue to control most of the country, and while the peace agreement is still in effect, there are small bouts of violence around the country between the two parties. It’s estimated that up to 300,000 have been killed in the civil war, including people from the 2014 Bentiu massacre, one of the more well known happenings of the civil war, also known as the “worst massacre” of the ongoing civil war by The Economist (South Sudan, economist.com.) The civil war has also caused more than 1 million people to be displaced in South Sudan, and more than 400,000 people to flee the country to neighbouring countries such as Kenya, Sudan, and Uganda.(Gorur, Adtiti, Stohl) Culturally, the civil war in South Sudan takes a large toll on its people. In a sense the nation was seen as being culturally peaceful within itself

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