Note: This op-ed originally appeared in the Daily Beast and was written by The Sentry co-founder John Prendergast.
It is a symbol of how broken the international response system is to genocide and mass atrocities that after nearly three years of fratricidal war, and more recently of flashing neon warnings by normally circumspect United Nations officials of impending genocide in South Sudan, that there is no legitimate diplomatic mechanism to address the demands of the various warring parties and their proxy militias in the world’s newest country. The peace agreement signed in 2015 appears dead in the water, and the peace process seems just as lifeless.
What is needed is something to dramatically shake up the deadly status quo and the inertia compelling the parties toward greater escalation. This requires a major new diplomatic initiative with some fresh faces at a very senior level to divert some of the energies now focused solely on war to instead focus on possible solutions through a negotiations process.