Vandewint et al (2007). The Impact of the LRA on Communities in Western Equatoria State
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After 21 years of civil war that ended with the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) on 9th January 2005, the people of Western Equatoria State
and other parts of southern Sudan have a great desire to live in peace. However, since late 2005, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) – a Ugandan dissident group – has
plagued communities in Western Equatoria with sporadic but devastating incidents of looting, abduction, rape, and murder. Despite numerous reports outlining the humanitarian
situation and the security challenges posed by the LRA in Sudan, little is known about its actual impact on the communities it has targeted. Recently, attention has focused on the
high-profile efforts by the Government of South Sudan to mediate peace negotiations between the Government of Uganda and the LRA. This report highlights the need to expand the international community’s perspective to include the grievances felt by Southern Sudanese communities who have suffered at the hands of the LRA. Based on the results
of a community-based research project, this report outlines the destabilizing impact of the LRA on local communities and provides recommendations for collaborative approaches to mitigate the impact of the LRA in South Sudan. The protection and livelihoods of insecure communities of Western Equatoria State must be improved in order for them to realize the benefits of peace and cultivate the long-term stability so desperately needed in this war-ravaged region.