Fenton and Loughna (2013). The search for common ground Civil–military coordination and the protection of civilians in South Sudan
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This desk-based study assesses the contribution of humanitarian–military coordination to the protection of civilians (PoC) in South Sudan, with a particular focus on the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). The mandates of both UNMISS and its predecessor, the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), have been broad and ambiguous, with highly ambitious PoC objectives. However, neither seems to have had a clear and mission-wide understanding of what was expected in terms of PoC, and the military component (particularly in UNMIS) haslacked the skills, capacity and willingness to protect civilians in any substantive way. Under-resourcing, insufficient troop numbers, weak transport and logistics capacity and competing demands and priorities have all presented operational challenges for both missions. One of the central problems with both missions has been the tension within their mandates between protecting civilians and supporting the peace process and the Government of South Sudan (GoSS). Current PoC strategy provides noguidance on how UNMISS shouldrespond when the security forces of South Sudan represent a threat to the population, and there is a widespread perception that UNMISS is unable or unwilling to challenge the GoSS and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) on key issues related to its mandate.....