Juba violence
South Sudanese policemen and soldiers stand guard along a street following renewed fighting in South Sudan's capital Juba Reuters

The South Sudanese governement has announced alternatives to the deployment of further peacekeepers in the country. Earlier in July, the African Union (AU) approved a plan to deploy more United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (Unmiss) troops after fighting between warring sides left at least 300 people dead in the capital Juba.

However, the government opposed the plan, with the South Sudanese envoy in London exclusively telling IBTimes UK the country does not want "to be meddled with by foreign troops".

Nhial Deng Nhial, advisor to President Salva Kiir, explained the government believes alternatives would be more effective in reaching a solution to the conflict, erupted in 2013.

"We proposed that President Salva Kiir be allowed to provide protection to [vice president] Dr Riek Machar and all SPLM-IO [Sudan People's Liberation Movement-in-Opposition] leaders", Nhial told the state-owned SSBC Television, according to the Sudan tribune.

"The other option is for the region to modify the current mandate of Unmiss peacekeepers to include a special unit of protection for the first vice president", he added.

Fears of a new civil war

The recent resurgence of violence sparked fears that the country could plunge back into civil war.

The conflict erupted in 2013 when Kiir, of the Dinka ethnic group, fired his deputy Machar, from the Nuer group, and his cabinet.

Ethnic-related violence then spread, with militia groups carrying out attacks in villages and areas known to be inhabited by either the Dinka or Nuer tribes.

More than 10,000 civilians have so far been killed in the conflict, amid allegations of crimes against humanity committed by both sides, including extrajudicial killings, abductions, rape, torture and use of child soldiers. At least two million people have also been displaced.

Although the warring factions have signed at least seven peace deals, violence has continued, and a January report from the African Union blamed both leaders for the ongoing unrest.

The latest outbreak of violence occurred as the country, the world's newest nation, marked its fifth year of independence from Sudan on 9 July 2016. Machar's return to South Sudan and his reinstatement as vice president in April had restored hopes for the implementation of a peace process signed in August 2015. However, tensions have been running high since Machar's return.