Sudan’s Referendum

ABYEI, 2 December 2010 (IRIN) - The 9 January 2011 referendum in Southern Sudan is very likely to lead to the creation of a new sovereign state. Decades of civil war have devastated the territory, where basic infrastructure is in ruins, inter-communal conflict widespread and food security a perennial problem. All these issues and more are outlined in this new IRIN film and explored in greater depth in our extensive text coverage.


Latest analysis

Referendum vote over, now the hard work begins

JUBA, 19 January 2011 (IRIN) - The referendum vote on the future of Southern Sudan defied critics by passing off peacefully, but the region still faces challenges that could threaten stability, say experts and officials. full report

Referendum outcome worries Somalis in South

JUBA, 10 January 2011 (IRIN) - The question on the minds of many Somalis and other Muslims living in Southern Sudan is: should the ongoing referendum result in secession, what will happen to them? full report

What they're saying about the referendum

NAIROBI, 29 December 2010 (IRIN) - A series of reports have been issued ahead of Southern Sudan’s 9 January 2011 independence referendum. They cover developments on the ground, prospects for a future divided country and the risks of renewed war. Here are some of the highlights. full report

Sudan’s Abyei bracing for a "bad Christmas"

ABYEI, 1 December 2010 (IRIN) - As international mediators struggle to resolve a row over who will govern Abyei, residents in the troubled and increasingly militarized region of Sudan are growing impatient. Analysts fear the frustration may get out of hand. full report

Securing a peaceful divorce in Sudan

JUBA, 25 November 2010 (IRIN) - A January referendum in Southern Sudan is likely to lead to the creation of a new country - the first in Africa since Eritrea gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993 - but much work needs to be done to ensure the separation is more peaceful than that of its Horn of Africa neighbours. full report

Countdown to the Southern referendum

NAIROBI, 23 November 2010 (IRIN) - The people of Southern Sudan regard January’s referendum as their first genuine opportunity to exert their right to self-determination, as enshrined in the 1945 UN Charter and underlined in the 2005 peace deal that ended decades of civil war between North and South. full report

Key challenges ahead of voting

JUBA, 1 October 2010 (IRIN) - Three months before Sudan's landmark referenda on the status of the South and Abyei, concern is rising as to whether credible polls can be pulled off in such a short time. Below is an outline of some pending key challenges: full report

Referendum raises expulsion fears*

KHARTOUM, 27 September 2010 (IRIN) - Forced expulsions, violent recriminations, mass exodus, peaceful co-existence - just some of the possible outcomes for hundreds of thousands of Southern Sudanese living in the North, and to a lesser extent, vice versa, after a January referendum when the South is likely to vote to transform its semi-autonomy into full independence. full report

Post-referendum fears for Southern Sudan

JUBA, 19 July 2010 (IRIN) - The January 2011 referendum in Southern Sudan will mark a turning point for the region and could see the formation of Africa's newest state, but how will the south fare after the vote? full report

A guide to Abyei’s referendum

JUBA, 14 July 2010 (IRIN) - It looks like a simple enough issue: whether a pocket of land in the middle of Sudan is part of the north or the south. But the Abyei question is key to lasting peace in the country. full report

A test for the African Union

JUBA, 29 June 2010 (IRIN) - The African Union (AU) is to play a key role in discussions between Northern and Southern Sudan following a referendum that is widely expected to initiate the secession of the latter. full report

Key post-referendum issues

JUBA, 20 May 2010 (IRIN) - Southern Sudan will in early 2011 hold a referendum to determine whether to remain part of a united Sudan or become a separate state. The referendum was a core component of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) that ended decades of conflict between the Southern Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) and the Khartoum government. full report

Dangerous divisions in Sudan

JUBA/KHARTOUM, 23 April 2010 (IRIN) - This month’s chaotic elections have widened divisions within the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM), according to analysts, who warn of risks to a referendum on southern secession, to future relations between two potentially independent states, and to the very stability of Sudan as a whole. full report
Latest news

Southern returnee deluge leaves aid workers in a quandary

Culture shock for many southern returnees

"Tone down the rhetoric" urges top UN official

Excitement, frustration as referendum registration gets under way

Food the key to resettlement in South

UN raises humanitarian concerns ahead of referendum

Referendum will "increase humanitarian needs"

Referendum returnees "face food shortages"
Related films

North to South
IRIN Film: North to South
Hope and Fear
IRIN Film: Hope and Fear


Recent Sudan Photos


IRIN Talks podcasts

Matthew Bell of Frontier Economics Limited on the cost of a return to war in Sudan

John Ashworth analyses the upcoming Sudan referendum and the dangers of a disputed result; Chris Mburu, Kenyan UN human rights lawyer, explains why child education sponsorship works

Tommy Thompson, WFP, on building roads in Sudan; and preview of new IRIN booklet on maternal mortality in Afghanistan

Disarming Sudan/ Livestock Standards/ IDP Treaty

Sudan - is it heading for peace, or back to war?
Hear our Voices
  Ajal Kaba, "My hope is for education and a better life after the referendum"
  KENYA-SUDAN: Joshua, "After the referendum, I’ll be going back"
Links and References

Full Sudan coverage
HIV/AIDS news and analysis on Sudan
IRIN Sudan coverage in French
IRIN Sudan coverage in Arabic
ReliefWeb Sudan
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