South Sudan government went hard on foreign bodies intervening in its internal crisis that began in july 2016. President Salva rejected the 4,000 peacekeepers freshly deployed to South Sudan to stabilize the region and restore peace. In his denunciating statement he said “any activity of the peacekeepers without the consent of South Sudan is an invasion of its territorial sovereignty”. The inflammatory remark sends a disturbing message to United Nations headquarters, a global institution involve in peacebuilding and peace protection.
Here’s the contention:
One of the five principles of UN peacekeeping clearly highlights that ” State(s) in dispute must consent to peacekeeping before any peace mission can be carried out” Violation of this rule means that the mission will not be considered as peacekeeping but illegal occupation such is the case during the Korean War of 1950.
United Nations however have the responsibility to protect civilians and maintain internal order by virtue of its mandate. The challenge here is how UN will enforce its operations.
Delegation headed by Smanatha Power, US ambassador to UN visited Salva to pressurize him to accept the peacekeepers for the safety of the civilians. After a long talk and threat of arms sanction, 4,000 blue helmet forces were agreed to be deployed, eventually.
After the diplomats left, S/Sudan government turn around to announce conditions for approval including what weapons the troops must carry, and prior acceptance of troop contributors’ country.
President Salva Kiir and his vice Machar sparked civil war in the country since 2013 and until now hostility and unrest has not ended.