Everyone agrees that South Sudan “stands on the brink of an all-out ethnic civil war,” as Yasmin Sooka, of the United Nations Human Rights Council, put it. But there is no consensus on how to move forward.
The debate in the Security Council mirrors an earlier one in the African Union’s five-person Commission of Inquiry set up after mass violence erupted in South Sudan in December 2013. Led by Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of Nigeria, commission members came from the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Union’s office on Women, Peace and Security, and academia. I was one of the two academics.… Seguir leyendo »
The conflict in South Sudan is only the latest instance where extreme violence has erupted after a breakdown of political order. But rather than prioritizing political reform, the international community tends to focus on criminalizing the perpetrators of violence.
Since the end of the Cold War, the world has looked to the Nuremberg Trials as a model for closure in the wake of extreme violence; international criminal trials are the preferred response. This common sense should have come under scrutiny in recent months after a growing number of countries in the African Union advocated withdrawal from the International Criminal Court. Instead, the debate has focused on the motives of African leaders, not on the inadequacy of court trials as a response to politically driven mass violence.… Seguir leyendo »