South Sudan Overview
Animals and Plants
The war and its consequences
As bad as the war was for the people of South Sudan, it also benefited wildlife. Because people had to flee and withdrew from many regions in order to escape the war, the animals could live here undisturbed. Their natural enemy, humans, could no longer harm them. That is why there is a rich wildlife in South Sudan.
Which animals live in South Sudan?
South Sudan wants to attract tourists to the country and is focusing on sustainable tourism here. Therefore, protected areas for animals are being established. This includes, for example, the Nimule National Park in the south-east of the country. Hippos and waterbuck live here, but also many crocodiles.
The Boma National Park is located in the east of South Sudan. Originally, antelope species such as the white-eared kob and the tiang were supposed to be protected here. Other animals were added, such as buffalo, Mongalla gazelles and many more. A rich animal world now lives here with elephants, leopards, giraffes and zebras.
What is the sudd?
The most fertile area in South Sudan is the Sudd. This is a swamp area that extends along the Nile. It is flooded regularly and is therefore very fertile. Many plants grow here. The area is 55,000 square kilometers.
South Sudan – poor, rich country
South Sudan is a very poor country and is still suffering from the consequences of the serious civil war. Many people who had fled to neighboring countries during the war returned over time and presented the country with major problems. For more articles on South Sudan and Africa, please visit constructmaterials.
There is oil in South Sudan
But at the same time, South Sudan is a country rich in natural resources. It has Petroleum found. This oil could help improve the economic situation. South Sudan is now allowed to transport its oil through Sudan. There is also cooperation with Ethiopia for oil transport.
After independence in July 2011, there was a spirit of optimism in the country. But now hope has faded. The South Sudanese conflict between the Dinka and the Nuer ruined many positive developments in the country. Despite a peace agreement in August 2015, there was no peace. The economic development of the country, which would be quite possible, is being hindered considerably by the existing conflicts.
Livestock, millet and corn
Besides the oil income, most of the people in South Sudan make a living from agriculture, with most of them working for their own consumption. They keep cattle and grow plants. In a country with twelve million inhabitants, there are eleven million cattle and 19 million sheep.
85 out of 100 people don’t get any wages at all, but live from what they generate themselves, mostly on small farms. Millet and maize, for example, are grown. But a lot of food has to be imported into the country. Building materials and many other goods and services are also imported.
Many farmers have only the simplest means to manage their small areas of land.
South Sudan is one of the 49 least developed countries in the world. South Sudan is also heavily dependent on outside help.
A large part of the population lives below the poverty line. Although the numbers of the poor fell in 2011, the year they separated from Sudan, they have now risen again to almost 60 out of 100 people who have to get by on less than one US dollar a day.
History and Politics
History of South Sudan after the split from the north
For the history of Sudan up to the separation of South Sudan please read under “History of Sudan”.
The conflicts between the developed, Islamic north and the Christian and underdeveloped south existed during the British colonial period.
End of the civil war between the north and the south
In 2005 the civil war between the north and the south ended. But as early as 1955, rebels had been fighting for an independent state in South Sudan. This serious conflict came to a temporary end in 1972 with the Addis Ababa Agreement. The south should now have equal rights and a regional government was set up.
The fight for oil
Perhaps the conflict would now have come to an end, but crude oil was discovered in the south, which is characterized by a special quality. Where previously religious and ethnic conflicts were the focus, economic interests have now come to the fore. The north could not accept the fact that the south wanted to use the oil wells independently.
This mixed up with religious interests again, as increased Islamization wanted to include South Sudan as well. The 1972 agreement was no longer relevant from 1983 and the civil war between the north and the south broke out again. And this time it wasn’t just about religion, but about oil, in other words, a lot of money.
By 2002 this second civil war had claimed more than two million lives. Most of them were civilians and many children also lost their lives.
Peace treaty in 2005
It was not until January 9, 2005 that a peace treaty was reached between the government in the north and the liberation movement in the south. This peace process was extremely difficult and was carried out in stages. Both parties mistrusted each other from the start. The unity of all of Sudan no longer came about.
The 54th African state
On July 9, 2011, South Sudan declared itself independent and became the 54th African state. The country’s first president was Salva Kiir Mayardi.
The capital of South Sudan is called Juba. North Sudan recognized the independence of South Sudan. On July 14, 2011, South Sudan became the 193rd member of the United Nations.
A year earlier, South Sudan had voted on independence. Almost all South Sudanese spoke out in favor of an independent state. Many South Sudanese who had previously fled to the north returned to the south.
Conflicts still exist over the exact limits. Abyei Province in particular is controversial because there is a lot of oil here.
But South Sudan still did not calm down. Since 2013, there have been violent conflicts between the president and his former deputy. The parties are fighting violently and ruthlessly and the country is already sinking into war again.
The power struggle between Salva Kiir Mayardi and the rebel leader Machar intensified. In 2018, a peace agreement was reached in 2018. A joint government was formed and control over certain regions of South Sudan was distributed.
Typical South Sudan
Jewelry scars and piercings
Many different population groups live in South Sudan, most of whom also keep their old rites and customs. These include the Dinka and the Nuer, these are the largest groups. Decorative scars and piercings that men and women wear on their faces are typical for almost all ethnic groups. You can already see that in younger children. It corresponds to the human ideal of beauty.
In South Sudan a lot is passed on orally, from great-grandparents to grandparents to grandchildren. These are stories that deal with life, everyday life, religion and the important events in the life of every person.
Cows are very important in South Sudan (also in general in Sudan). These are an important sign of the wealth of the people. Many people live as shepherds. Some even take the names of their cows, both men and women. Children also get the name of cows.