Date & Time: Tuesday 21 June 2016, 17:30-19:30
Venue: Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre (BGLT) - SOAS, Russell Square, , London , WC1H 0XG
Speakers: Hilde F. Johnson, Barney Afako, Peter Biar Ajak, Clare Short
Chair: Professor Mats Berdal (King’s College London)
In July 2011, South Sudan was granted independence and became the world’s newest country. Yet just two-and-a-half years after this momentous decision, the country was in the grips of renewed civil war and political strife. Hilde F. Johnson, Special Representative of the Secretary- General and Head of the UN Mission, was witness to the many challenges which the country faced as it struggled to adjust to its new autonomous state. In this book, she provides a unique insider’s account of South Sudan’s descent from the ecstatic celebrations of July 2011 to the outbreak of the disastrous conflict in December 2013 and the early phases of the fighting. Join us for a launch of the book, and a discussion with the author, Clare Short (Former Secretary of State for International Development), Peter Biar Ajak (Country Co-Director for the International Growth Centre in South Sudan) and Barney Afako (lawyer and expert on transitional justice).
Followed by a reception, where copies of the book, published by I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd., will be on sale.
Hilde F. Johnson was the Special Representative of the Secretary- General and Head of the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (2011-2014). From 2007- 2011 Hilde F. Johnson was Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF, where she was in charge of the organisation’s humanitarian operations, crisis response and security issues. She was a key player in brokering the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) for Sudan in 2005. She is the author of Waging Peace in Sudan: The Inside Story of the Negotiations That Ended Africa’s Longest Civil War.
Peter Biar Ajak is the Country Co-Director for the International Growth Centre in South Sudan and the CEO of South Sudan Wrestling Entertainment, a nonprofit that uses the cultural sport of wrestling to promote peace among South Sudan’s tribes. He was previously the World Bank In-Country Economist in South Sudan (2009-2011), and also previously, the Coordinator of Policy and Strategy in the Office of the Minister of National Security in the Office of the President (2011-2014). Peter is also a member of the SPLM Economic Taskforce.
Barney Afako is a lawyer, and also sits as a Tribunal Judge in London. He was born in Uganda and has extensive experience of work in Sudan and South Sudan. Since 2009, he has been an adviser to the African Union High Level Panel on Sudan and South Sudan chaired by former South African president, Thabo Mbeki.
The Rt Hon Clare Short was the UK Secretary of State for International Development (1997-2003). She was Shadow Minister for Women (1993-1995) and Shadow Secretary of State for Transport (1995-1996). She was Opposition spokesperson on Overseas Development (1996-1997). In 2003, Clare Short resigned from her role as Secretary of State for International Development over the Iraq war. Clare Short is a member of both the Advocacy Panel of Cities Alliance and the Advisory Committee of International Lawyers for Africa, and a Trustee of Africa Humanitarian Action.
This event is free but registration is required. Please register your place on Eventbrite.