This event is postponed.

Speaker: Peter Biar Ajak, Fellow, Middle East Initiative

On July 9, 2011, a momentous occasion unfolded as hundreds of thousands of South Sudanese converged at the Dr. John Garang Mausoleum to witness the birth of their newfound nation. The atmosphere was electric with jubilation. After enduring decades of brutal conflict, they had achieved the dream of establishing their sovereign state. However, just two years later, this optimism was eclipsed by a power struggle between the president and vice president, sparking a devastating civil war. Tragically, this conflict swiftly assumed ethnic dimensions, leading to the loss of hundreds of thousands of lives, the displacement of millions, and the severe deterioration of the economy. The initial euphoria of independence was soon replaced by profound disillusionment.

Today, South Sudan finds itself languishing at the lowest rungs of international indicators. The question that begs an answer is: What precipitated this unfortunate turn of events, and is there still hope for South Sudanese to rekindle the unity and sense of purpose that characterized their proclamation of independence?

Open to Harvard ID Holders Only: Admittance will be on a first come–first served basis. Coffee & Tea Provided.

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