Copeland considers unrealistic a threat of financial sanctions against South Sudan which is almost entirely dependent on foreign support. "That would hit above all the population which needs help more than ever."
Norway is regarded as one of the countries that assisted in the birth of South Sudan. The Norwegian development minister at the time, Hilde Johnson, was the main mediator of the "Comprehensive Peace Agreement" of 2005 which ended the civil war between Sudan and the SPLM.
Since then Norway has supported the process of nation-building in South Sudan and is seen as a close advisor to the government in Juba.
Johnson now heads the United Nations Military Mission in South Sudan. In the current crisis, Norway is not regarded as a partner that can be trusted as Johnson is seen as being too closely allied with President Kiir.
She is also criticized for not acting earlier to try and prevent the political crisis which was seen to be unfolding.
Also, the UNMISS troops work closely together with the South Sudanese army. "Johnson is offficially no longer a representative of Norway but of the UN," Daniel Large told DW. "But many South Sudanese do not make this distinction and regard Norway as biased."