In September 2018, South Sudanese political and armed actors signed a new peace agreement after months of negotiations between parties to the defunct 2015 Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCSS) and other groups that had since been created. While hailed by some as a significant step forward, the deal is clearly fragile. Fighting has since continued in parts of the country and some parties have reconsidered their support for the deal.
Prior to the signing of this agreement, International Refugee Rights Initiative (IRRI) interviewed over 100 South Sudanese citizens, at home and in exile, about what they knew and thought about previous peace agreements and efforts to get the country’s main political actors around the table. While such views are influenced by people’s access to information and by their own political and personal views, they give an insight into citizens’ perceptions and prevailing narratives about the conflict and its solutions, and provide lessons to improve citizen engagement with these elite processes.