Prendergast: How to catch Kony in 2012
A file picture taken on November 12, 2006 of LRA leader Joseph Kony answering journalists' questions at Ri-Kwamba, in Southern Sudan.
April 25th, 2012
11:34 AM ET

Prendergast: How to catch Kony in 2012

Editor’s Note: John Prendergast, co-founder of the Enough Project, is currently in residence at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies at the University of San Diego.

By John Prendergast – Special to CNN

It’s a long way from watching and sharing a video to actually catching a war criminal and ending a war.  But if the records that have been broken for videos watched and children abducted are to mean anything, then that gap must be bridged.  After an unprecedented push to pluck him from anonymity, can Joseph Kony - newly infamous leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), whose ranks over the last 25 years have been filled with child soldiers - be brought to justice in 2012?

Since 2008, Kony’s LRA has abducted 3,400 civilians.  For those operating under the premise that the LRA is in decline, consider this: in 2011 alone, there were nearly 300 reported LRA attacks in three central African countries, more than five per week, during which nearly 600 civilians were abducted.  In recent months, attacks are on the rise in Congo and the Central African Republic (CAR).  The LRA has carved out a safe haven in a national park in Congo, and other safe havens are being developed in CAR and, reportedly, Darfur.

Repeated peace initiatives have been spurned by Kony.  He will be stopped primarily by a focused, competent African-led military effort backed by an equally robust defection and demobilization program for LRA combatants. FULL POST

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Topics: Africa
July 6th, 2011
12:40 PM ET

South Sudan: A nation born into war

Editor's Note: John Prendergast is co-founder of the Enough Project and co-author of Unlikely Brothers.

By John Prendergast – Special to CNN

Days before South Sudan becomes the newest state in the world, it is being born into a virtual state of war with the part of Sudan it is leaving behind.  The war, however, remains unrecognized, undeclared and fought by proxy.  If its escalation is not prevented, it will become the world’s deadliest.

The previous North-South war between 1983 and 2005 claimed over two million lives. The Khartoum regime’s tactics included aerial bombing, helicopter gunship attacks, localized ethnic cleansing, support for Southern Sudanese militias, occasional military occupation of strategic towns, denial of humanitarian aid and draconian repression of civil society. FULL POST

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Topics: Africa • Sudan
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