Tensions rise between north and south: South Sudan took over a contested oilfield Tuesday, and said they would not leave the region until their northern neighbor, who they split from last July, stopped its attacks on the newly-formed nation. The oilfield is strategically important — it produces half of Sudan’s oil exports, and South Sudan claims it’s theirs. Many of the conflicts of late between the countries have come in part due to ill-defined borders, and this is just one example. As for the current situation South Kordofan Governor Ahmed Haroun said that crude oil production at Heglig, the site of the occupation. ”Our army is dealing with the situation. We hope we can finish that operation in hours,” Haroun said. source
» A bad harbinger? Months after Sudan split in two, the attack on a South Sudanese refugee camp — filled with many fleeing from Sudan proper — could prove dangerous to the fragile new nation. The two countries have a long, troubled history together, with the most recent civil war (which led to the split earlier this year) ending in 2005 after 22 years. ”Whatever allegations Khartoum labels against the Republic of South Sudan are baseless, but intended to justify his pending invasion of the south,” said Salva Kiir, South Sudan’s first president, who says that while peaceful solutions are best, “we will never allow our sovereignty to be violated by anybody.”
» The spit has something to do with it: The size of Sudan’s debt could effectively limit the region’s ability to get a fresh start as it splits into two. Southern Sudanese official Gabriel Changson Chang is making a hard push for the changes before the countries divide. “We want both the north and south to be economically viable,” he says. Current president Omar al-Bashir has made similar claims as well, and with good reason: Half of the country’s population currently lives on less than $1 a day and need some sort of food aid.
We will announce today in front of the world our acceptance and respect for the choice of the people of the south.Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir • Revealing that his country would accept the results of a country-splitting referendum between the north and south. The south chose, by a wide margin, to secede, a result that cuts back Bashir’s clout but could help stabilize the entire region. source (via • follow)
» Is the separation behind it? The Northern and Southern armies are set to split from one another as part of a larger breaking up of the country. It appears that the violence was rooted in a conflict over redeployment that would’ve sent soliders from the southern part of the country north, along with other soldiers in the unit.
daphranko asks: The news is centering around Egypt, but how goes Tunisia and Sudan?
» We say: We’ve been continuing to cover both countries – in Tunisia, the country is gearing up for an election, and a key Islamist spiritual leader just returned. While he’s not running for president, he may serve as a catalyst for Islamist parties in the country. In Sudan, their recent vote to split the country leaves quickly-growing new capitol Juba in a position where it’s quickly growing at breakneck speed.