Since gaining independence from Sudan in 2011, the new nation of South Sudan has experienced civil war, and mass atrocities against civilians, including widespread sexual violence, murder, and forced displacement. Multiple attempts at peace agreements have been made, and largely stalled. These delays contribute to conflict and violence across the country—violence which sparked warnings of genocide in 2016. Between 2013 and 2018, over 400,000 people were killed as a result of the war. In March 2017, the United Nations Human Rights Commision determined that ethnic cleansing was occurring. The civil war has formally ended, but in 2020 there was an increase in both intercommunal and politically motivated conflicts. Explore the history behind the ethnic conflict and the current risks of mass atrocities that civilians face.
Discover how a political crisis sparked a large-scale conflict in which civilians were targeted because of their ethnic identity.
Our 2018 report examines whether atrocities could have been prevented in the years immediately following independence.
Our quantitative assessment, from the Early Warning Project, estimates the risk of a new mass killing in Sudan.
View photos and read a firsthand report by photojournalist Pete Muller on his 2012 visit to the border areas between Sudan and South Sudan.
The Museum led a bearing witness trip to Southern Sudan in 2010 as it prepared for the referendum on South Sudanese independence.