Southern Sudan awaits independence

12 Jan

South Sudanese soldiers pose with their rifles. After decades of civil war, Southern Sudan will vote this week for independence.

In the 1960s, Philip Geng Nyuol was ambushing and firebombing cars in the name of Southern Sudanese independence. After Sunday’s referendum, his cause may be realized.

“This is a dream,” Nyuol told the New York Times, “a dream we always hoped would come true, even if it took one thousand years.”

Even prior to becoming an independent nation, Sudan has been a land of conflict. In the 1920’s, British colonizers declared that Sudan should remain separate – in order to stop the spread of Islam from the Arab-controlled north.

Sudan gained independence in 1956, but a 17-year civil war had begun the year before.

A second civil war lasted 22 years and resulted in an estimated 2 million deaths, and led to the rise of current president Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir. al-Bashir is the first sitting head-of-state to be indicted for genocide by the International Criminal Court.

Although polls will remain open until next week to allow those in all regions to vote, Nyuol told the Times he expected to vote as soon as the polls were open, early Sunday morning.

“We have waited for this, we have fought for it,” he says.

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One Response to “Southern Sudan awaits independence”

  1. Mr WordPress January 12, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

    This blog is legendary

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