This is the fifth, and final, paper in a series of rapid response updates on the aftermath of the JPA by the Rift Valley Institute for XCEPT. See Update 1 ‘What Next for the Juba Peace Agreement?’, Update 2 ‘What Next for the Juba Peace Agreement? Evolving political and security dynamics in Darfur’, Update 3 ‘What Next for Sudan’s Peace Process? Evolving Political and Security Dynamics in the Two Areas‘, and Update 4 ‘What Next for Sudan’s Peace Process? Political and Security Dynamics in the East‘.

Key Points:

  • The relationship between these two groups has complicated the ongoing discussions around the formation a new political arrangement in Sudan. Crucially, it has provided a means through which the Mil-TG can either spoil a new political arrangement with the FFC or potentially weaken them after one has been made.
  • The relationship also makes the JPA signatories dependent on the Mil-TG for their political legitimacy and survival. This has meant, in practice, that any part of the JPA that the Mil-TG disagrees with or feels threatened by is then not implemented. It has also bound the JPA signatories to the post-coup, military dominated version of the transitional government.
  • Contrary to what many in Sudan’s civilian political movement had hoped, the Juba Peace Agreement (JPA) did not lead to a consolidation of political power between the Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC) and the agreement’s signatories – mostly a collection of Sudan’s armed groups. Instead, divisions between the two groups resulted in an alignment between the JPA signatories and the transitional government’s military component (Mil-TG).
  • At the local level, the JPA became an overtly political process mainly concerned with apportioning political representation to its signatories. It has provided little opportunity for groups not involved in the peace process to determine their own local governance arrangements. This has led to a backlash from communities who feel that their interests are threatened by the new political dispensation.
  • Tensions related to the peace process and JPA implementation have led to violence in Darfur, the Two Areas and eastern Sudan (see previous briefings). In recent months, this has been particularly severe in Blue Nile where hundreds of people have been killed and thousands displaced in inter-communal conflict driven in-part by political shifts related to the JPA.
  • Sudan’s political future, and thus the JPA, remain in doubt as the agreement’s signatories continue to see their future as closely linked to the Mil-TG and not the FFC or other civilian parties. This will likely lead to the continued non-implementation of the agreement and associated local conflicts