Columbia International Affairs Online: Working Papers

CIAO DATE: 03/2013

Getting to Normal with the Two Sudans

ate Almquist Knopf

February 2013

Center for Global Development


The time to normalize US diplomatic relations with the two Sudans is now. After more than a decade of US special envoys (Danforth, Zoellick, Natsios, Williamson, Gration, and Lyman) and the independence of South Sudan in July 2011, it is time for the United States to reevaluate what it is trying to achieve in its relations with the two Sudans and how best it can do that. In other words, does the United States still need a special envoy for Sudan and South Sudan and, if so, why? This paper argues that to achieve peace and stability within and between Sudan and South Sudan, the United States must now refocus its diplomatic engagement on the internal governance challenges in both states by moving to more normal diplomatic relations with each.