International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

South Sudan’s peacekeeping chief fired over gross negligence

The UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, has fired the peacekeeping chief in South Sudan after aid workers claimed that UN troops refused to respond when soldiers attacked an aid compound in July. This failure to act resulted in the death of a journalist and the rape of aid workers, and the deaths of at least 73 others in the three days of violence. Among the dead there were over 20 internally displaced people who had sought UN protection and two Peacekeepers. The Peacekeeping Chief was Kenyan Lt General Johnson Mogoa Kimani Ondieki, and Secretary General Ban has called for his immediate replacement. Because of inadequate leadership, the four battalions (China, Nepal, Ethiopia, and India) acted on conflicting orders, and all four ineffectively responded to the violence. Because of this gross negligence, “civilians were subjected to and witnessed gross human rights violations, including murder, intimidation, sexual violence and acts amounting to torture perpetrated by armed government soldiers.” Both the political factions in South Sudan are accused of Atrocity Crimes, and it is not clear which one committed this act.

There are currently 16,000 peacekeepers in South Sudan.


One response to “South Sudan’s peacekeeping chief fired over gross negligence

  1. srisku November 4, 2016 at 12:21 am

    The Human Rights Watch released a report describing other incidences of UN peacekeeper negligence in South Sudan. Investigations have found a few accounts of the peacekeeper’s failure to protect the civilians of South Sudan. Due to their “lack of training, a failure of unified command, and a gap in leadership,” many civilians were raped or killed, and in one instance a camp was burned to the ground. UN peacekeepers are allowed to use force in order to protect; however, they have failed to do so in many cases dating a few years back. Because of these findings Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon fired the Kenyan commander of the peacekeepers in South Sudan.

    In response to the firing of Kenyan Lt. Gen. Johnson Mogoa Kimani Ondieki, Kenya is now withdrawing 1,000 of its peacekeeping troops from the state. They have also decided to stop any cooperation or aid in the South Sudanese peace process, according to the New York Times. These actions could cause a setback for peace among the state because Kenya played such a large role in negotiating peace. As part of Kenya’s response to the firing they now refuse to re-appoint a new commander of the forces, and have halted plans on sending more peacekeepers. A statement made by Principal Secretary Monica Juma of Kenya stated that the firing “revealed a high degree of disrespect for our country.” The Kenyan government wished that the UN Secretary General would have discussed it with them before he made his final decision based on the information revealed by the investigations.

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