UNHCR: The CPA and Citizenship Issues

The Comprehensive Peace Agreement UNHCR has entered into this process in full understanding of the strengths and the continuing challenges for the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, within whose overall frame our discussions over the next two days must be placed.

Undeniably, despite the critiques, the Comprehensive Peace Agreement has many achievements to its credit. The Sudanese, in the north and in the south, have much to be proud of. The CPA ended one of Africa’s longest running conflicts, which left an estimated 2 million dead, 428,000 refugees in neighbouring countries and 2.5 million internally displaced.

Thanks to both sides, the peace has largely held for over five years. The CPA also created a framework in which both NCP and SPLM could talk with each other, map out common positions, and re-develop mutual trust - even in areas of continuing disagreement. The magnitude of these achievements, after more than two decades of continuous conflict, cannot be overstated. Of course, there are still myriad challenges.

On the eve of the signing of the CPA six years ago, SPLM leader, John Garang, captured the mood at Naivasha when he said, “We have reached the crest of the last hill in our tortuous ascent to the heights of peace.” Perhaps he was being a little too optimistic when he added, “There are no more hills ahead of us, the remaining ground is flat.” Without question, much work remains in the search for commonality on central issues like border demarcation, the sharing of natural resources and wealth, and importantly for today, future citizenship options, in particular for populations who fled conflict or migrated and re-started their lives in other parts of Sudan. READ FULL REPORT

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