December 28, 2013
A PEOPLE WHO THINK THEMSELVES A NATION ARE ONE:
Can South Sudan still avoid civil war? (DEutsche-Welle, 12/28/13)
Posted by Orrin Judd at December 28, 2013 8:41 AMLeading politicians from the south often have in past held posts as commanders in the rebel ranks. Also today's president, Salva Kiir, fought alongside Garang. But in 1991, a 40-year-old officer split the SPLA: Riek Machar, the man who later could become vice president of independent South Sudan. Garang's idea had been to reform Sudan as a whole, Machar instead wanted an independent country for the south.Kiir and Machar have been in a power struggle for decades and also come from two different ethnic groups - a fact they both try to use to their own advantage. Kiir has the backing of the Dinka, the largest ethnic group making up around 40 percent of the population. Machar, who's now accused of instigating a coup against Kiir, is a member of the Nuer group which makes up around 20 percent of the 8 million to 9 million people in the country. Those ethnic groups are being "mobilizied and used," Schomerus said.