A genocide we can stop
To Members of the UN Security Council and concerned regional countries:
As citizens from around the world deeply concerned with the situation in South Sudan, we call on you to take all measures to stop the spiral of hatred and violence. These include imposing a robust sanctions regime on the government, rebel leaders and top commanders responsible for the violence, and reinforcing the UNMISS peacekeepers with sufficient troops and capacity to better protect civilians. We also call on you to ensure immediate humanitarian assistance is delivered to tackle the threat of famine, and that the perpetrators of atrocities are tried by an international court. 20 years ago the world said "never again" after the Rwanda genocide - it’s time to live up to that promise.
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Two men are to blame: President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar. Locked in a bitter power struggle, both are cynically stoking tensions between ethnic groups that have lived peacefully together for decades. Both men have assets and family abroad. If we hit Kiir and Machar where it hurts -- their wallets -- we can stop this nightmare from spiraling into genocide.
With peace talks slowly resuming, the US and France are calling on the UN Security Council to impose sanctions and deploy more peacekeepers to protect civilians. Russia may try to block action, but even China doesn't want to see this oil-rich nation slide into chaos. So it's winnable - if we act fast. Let's flood key leaders with 1 million voices urging them to pass sanctions and deploy a stronger mission to protect the people of South Sudan.