Ever since tens of thousands of terrified civilians sought and received shelter at United Nations (UN) bases as civil war in South Sudan erupted in late 2013, protecting civilians has been the primary focus of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). Six years later, with a shaky peace deal and a new transitional government in place and the future of the country’s protection of civilians (PoC) sites a matter of intense debate, Dr. Timothy Donais reconsiders the protection dimension of the UNMISS mandate. Amid a shifting context for PoC in South Sudan — with UNMISS facing growing pressure to protect civilians beyond the narrow confines of PoC sites — the paper makes the case for the adoption of a protection through peace-building model, with a particular emphasis on supporting local peace-building efforts.

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