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Deals and Dealings: Inconclusive Peace and Treacherous Trade along the South Sudan—Uganda Border

Mareike Schomerus and Kristof Titeca
Africa Spectrum
Vol. 47, No. 2/3 (2012), pp. 5-31
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23350449
Page Count: 27
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Deals and Dealings: Inconclusive Peace and Treacherous Trade along the South Sudan—Uganda Border
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Abstract

Since Sudan's Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) was signed, its border with Uganda has become a hub of activity. Contrasting developments on the Ugandan side of the border with those on the South Sudanese side, the paper draws on empirical fieldwork to argue that the CPA has created new centres of power in the margins of both states. However, in day-to-day dealings on either side of the border, South Sudanese military actors have become dominant. In the particular case of Arua and the South Sudan—Uganda border, past wartime authority structures determine access to opportunities in a tightly regulated, inconclusive peace. This means that smallscale Ugandan traders — although vital to South Sudan — have become more vulnerable to South Sudan's assertions of state authority. The experience of Ugandan traders calls into question the broad consensus that trade across the border is always beneficial for peace-building. The paper concludes that trade is not unconditionally helpful to the establishment of a peaceful environment for everyone. Seit Unterzeichnung des Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) im Sudan hat sich die Grenze zwischen Südsudan und Uganda zu einem lebendigen Drehkreuz entwickelt. Gestützt auf eigene Feldforschungen stellen die Autoren die Entwicklungen in den Grenzregionen beider Länder dar, wo seit Abschluss des CPA neue Machtzentren entstanden sind. In den alltäglichen Geschäftsbeziehungen entlang der Grenze dominieren allerdings militärische Akteure. Im konkreten Fall von Arua und der südsudanesisch-ugandischen Grenze bestimmen Machtstrukturen aus Kriegszeiten den Zugang zu Handelsgelegenheiten, die in der Nachkriegsphase noch starken Regulierungen unterliegen. Ugandische Kleinhändler — für die Versorgung des Südsudan von zentraler Bedeutung — sind in dieser Situation zunehmend durch Eingriffe der neuen südsudanesischen Staatsmacht gefährdet. Die Erfahrungen der Händler aus Arua stellen den breiten Konsens infrage, grenzübergreifender Handel sei für einen Friedensprozess grundsätzlich förderlich. Die Autoren kommen zu dem Schluss, dass Handelsbeziehungen nicht in jedem Fall dazu beitragen, ein friedliches Umfeld für die gesamte Bevölkerung zu schaffen.

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