Two men are to blame: President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar. Locked in a bitter power struggle, both are cynically stoking tensions between ethnic groups that have lived peacefully together for decades. Both men have assets and family abroad. If we hit Kiir and Machar where it hurts -- their wallets -- we can stop this nightmare from spiraling into genocide.
With peace talks slowly resuming, the US and France are calling on the UN Security Council to impose sanctions and deploy more peacekeepers to protect civilians. Russia may try to block action, but even China doesn't want to see this oil-rich nation slide into chaos. So it's winnable - if we act fast. Let's flood key leaders with 1 million voices urging them to pass sanctions and deploy a stronger mission to protect the people of South Sudan:
It’s heartbreaking - and outrageous. More than one million of South Sudan’s eleven million people have fled their homes, tens of thousands have died, the country is facing widespread famine. Yet for months large delegations from both sides have been staying in plush hotels in neighbouring Ethiopia, making little effort and less progress in negotiating for peace.
We can stop this insanity. Sanctions, including asset freezes and travel bans, will directly affect Kiir and Machar's abilities to access their assets and visit friends and family living abroad. Even if we lose at the Security Council, unilateral sanctions by several countries will have a serious effect.
Bolstering the UN protection force is also key. The UN has, unprecedentedly, opened its own bases to shelter 85,000 civilians fleeing from massacres. But there are less than 9,000 UN troops to cover a country the size of France. One UN base has already been brazenly attacked, and the government is ominously threatening to kick the UN out of the country. We urgently need a much larger, stronger UN mission.
We failed to stop the spiral of violence in Syria 3 years ago, but this conflict is new, and can still be contained. Let's not fail South Sudan. Sign and share with everyone:
South Sudan is the world's newest nation, and it was born out of decades of resistance to the genocidal brutality of Sudan's regime. But like many of our countries that have been around for a long time, there's a big gap between the leadership and the people. The gap is tragic, because President Salva Kiir was widely thought to be sincerely motivated, but he and Riek Machar seem to have become gripped by escalating anger, fear, and thirst for power. Let's stand with the South Sudanese people and help them rein in their leaders, to recover the peace that they have suffered so long for.
To Members of the UN Security Council and concerned regional countries:As citizens from around the world deeply concerned with the situation in South Sudan, we call on you to take all measures to stop the spiral of hatred and violence. These include imposing a robust sanctions regime on the government, rebel leaders and top commanders responsible for the violence, and reinforcing the UNMISS peacekeepers with sufficient troops and capacity to better protect civilians. We also call on you to ensure immediate humanitarian assistance is delivered to tackle the threat of famine, and that the perpetrators of atrocities are tried by an international court. 20 years ago the world said "never again" after the Rwanda genocide - it’s time to live up to that promise.
Boko Haram Abducts 103 Girls From High School In Chibok, Borno State
Secondary school girls in northern Nigeria. Photo Credit: Pius Utomi Ekpei/AFP/Getty Images
By Saharareporters, New YorkSaharaReporters has just learned that suspected members of the Islamist militant group, Boko Haram, have abducted 103 students in a daring raid at the Girls Secondary School in Chibok, a town on the border between Borno and Adamawa States.
The group’s assault on the all-female high school took place on Monday night. A security source disclosed that members of the extremist Islamist group killed a soldier guarding the school and inflicted injuries on several villagers before abducting the students.
The police commissioner in Borno State, Lawan Tanko, confirmed the kidnapping of the students to reporters in the state.
A source who lives near the school told a correspondent of SaharaReporters that there was complete chaos during the attack, adding that the students could put up no resistance to the heavily armed attackers.
The mass abduction lasted between 9PM -3 AM as sect members made several trips picking and choosing their victims out of the 250 students enrolled in the school.
Residents of the area also told Saharareporters that the militants razed 100 homes because some of the residents initially resisted the militants.
Boxers Across African continent have joined hands fighting to keep Peace & Stability in Africa in the Part -I of the "IBF Peace & Stability Boxing Tournament in Africa" scheduled at the African Capital City of Addis Ababa, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, May 31, 2014.
Join hands as we serve lives by fighting for Peace & Stability in Africa.
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