|Republic of the Sudan (English)
جمهورية السودان (Arabic)
Jumhūriyyat as-Sūdān (Arabic)
|Republic of Sudan|
Motto : النصر لنا
|Official language||Arabic and English|
|State and form of government||Federal Republic with a “sovereign council” made up of military and civilians|
|Head of state||
Chairman of the “Sovereign Council”
Abdel Fattah Burhan
|Head of government||
|population||43,120,843 (July 2018, estimated)|
|Population density||19.4 inhabitants per km²|
|Population development||+1.69% (2016)|
gross domestic product
|Human Development Index||0.51 ( 170th ) (2019)|
|currency||Sudanese pound (SDG)|
|independence||January 1, 1956 (formerly British - Egyptian condominium )|
Nahnu jund Allah jund al-watan
|Time zone||UTC + 2|
|ISO 3166||SD , SDN, 729|
The Republic of Sudan ([ zuˈdaːn ], also [ ˈzuːdan ], English Republic of the Sudan , Arabic جمهورية السودان, DMG Ǧumhūriyyat as-Sūdān ) is a state in northeast Africa with access to the Red Sea . It is bordered by Egypt to the north, Eritrea to the east, Ethiopia to the southeast, South Sudan to the south, the Central African Republic to the southwest, Chad to the west and Libya to the northwest . With an area of more than 1.8 million square kilometers, the country is about five times the size of Germany and the third largest territorial state of the African continent. More than a fifth of the 40 million inhabitants live in the capital region around Khartoum , which forms a densely populated triangle with the cities of Omdurman and Bahri .
The Republic of Sudan has been independent from the United Kingdom ( Anglo-Egyptian Sudan ) since January 1, 1956 . On June 30, 1989, Umar al-Bashir came to power through a military coup and from then on ruled the country as president using repressive means. On April 11, 2019, al-Bashir was arrested and deposed after another military coup after 30 years in office , and a state of emergency was declared. After a long struggle, the military leadership and civil opposition agreed on a transitional government.
Since the referendum on July 9, 2011, South Sudan has been independent from Sudan. Until the independence of South Sudan, Sudan was the largest country in Africa.
The country's name is an abbreviation of the medieval Arabic name Bilād as-Sūdān, "land of the blacks", which in the specific case meant the Christianized kingdoms in Nubia . Grammatically, the word derives from the feminine form of aswad ( Arabic أسود, DMG aswad 'black'). In West Africa, the savannah zone south of the Sahara from the Atlantic coast in the west to northern Nigeria is referred to as the greater Sudan landscape . In the east, this includes parts of Chad and Darfur in Sudan and South Sudan.
“Sudan” has a masculine gender in German (“der Sudan”, “im Sudan”). The Standing Committee on Geographical Names does not provide for an article when using the short form of the country name. In Switzerland as in Austria, however, the short form of the country name with male gender and article is also officially used. In general language usage in the nominative, dative and accusative case, however, the use of the masculine is also common in Germany.
Sudan is located in northeastern Africa. With an area of 1,861,484 km², the national territory covers just over six percent of the continent. Among the African states, only Algeria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo are larger in terms of area.
In total, Sudan has a state border of 6,819 km in length. In the north it borders on Egypt for 1,276 km , with the borderline largely corresponding to the 22nd parallel north. There are three different areas, the ownership of which is disputed: the Hala'ib triangle , the area around Bir Tawil and the Wadi Halfa Salient . In the northeast, Sudan has a 853 km long access to the Red Sea and thus a connection to the Indian Ocean .
In the east, Sudan borders on Eritrea (682 km), in the south-east on Ethiopia (744 km), in the south on South Sudan (2158 km), in the south-west on the Central African Republic (174 km), in the west on Chad (1403 km) ) and in the northwest to Libya (382 km). On the southern border, the affiliation of the Abyei area between Sudan and South Sudan is disputed.
Its relief is determined by the basin landscape of the Nile and its peripheral mountains. The mountains of the Jibal al-Bahr al-ahmar on the Red Sea rise in the northeast , reaching a height of 2259 m. The south-western edge of the basin is represented by the North Equatorial Sill and the Central African Sill , which also form the watershed between the Nile and Congo systems . In the west rises a basalt mountain range on the Marra plateau , the highest point of which is Mount Marra at 3,088 meters , which is also the highest mountain in Sudan, and forms the geographical border with the Chad Basin . In the center rise the Nuba Mountains , which are between 500 meters and 1325 meters high. In the north, the country merges into the Sahara on both sides of the Nile , with the part west of the Nile known as the Libyan Desert and the part east of the Nile as the Nubian Desert . In the region around Khartoum , where the White Nile and Blue Nile flow together to form the actual Nile, wide, flat clay plains spread out.
Sudan's tropical climate is characterized by high temperatures and summer rain, especially in the south . In the rainy season from April to November, the amount of precipitation is distributed from 1500 millimeters in the south to less than 100 millimeters in the north. The mean monthly temperatures are between 24 degrees Celsius and 32 degrees Celsius. Due to the desert climate in the north, temperatures can reach 41 degrees Celsius during the day and 4 degrees Celsius at night.
From a hydrological point of view, Sudan is predominantly influenced by the Nile. Most of the East African country is in its catchment area. However, the Nile in Sudan loses water primarily due to the desert climate. Irrigation farming is practiced on the banks of the Nile. The flood disaster in summer 2020 was caused by heavy rainfall on the upper reaches of the Blue Nile . Almost all river water comes from either equatorial Africa or Ethiopia . There are also some coastal rivers, which are mostly dry due to the high aridity . In the west of the country there are connections to the Chad Basin and other endorheic basins.
Flora and fauna
The vegetation ranges from the sparsest vegetation in the northern deserts and semi-deserts to thorny savannas in the Sahel zone, dry savannah with tall grass to moist savannas . The forest population decreased by 1.4 percent between 1990 and 2000. The diverse fauna includes elephants , buffalo , giraffes , antelopes , hyenas , lions , hippos and crocodiles as well as numerous birds of prey and water birds , especially in central Sudan .
There are ten national parks in Sudan (as of 2006). The protected area system also includes nature reserves and bird sanctuaries. The mountain Barkal with the historic city of Sanam are part of the UNESCO World Heritage and both together form the ancient capital Napata of the Kingdom of Kush .
All data on the population up to 2011 refer to Sudan before the breakaway of South Sudan on July 9, 2011. There are different data on this. They range from 35,847,407 (2006 calculation, World Gazetter), over around 38 million (2006 estimate, Federal Foreign Office) to 45,047,502. The latter figure is calculated for July 2011, also before the independence of South Sudan. For 2016, the CIA World Fact Book calculates the population for the former entire Sudan at 49.2 million and the number for the south only at 12.5 million. After the split, just under 36.7 million inhabitants remained for the north.
33.8 percent of Sudanese lived in cities in 2015; Metropolitan area is Khartoum. 39.4 percent of the population were younger than 15 in the same year. The population is growing at 1.69 percent per year (as of 2016).
|1905 (official estimate)||1,853,000|
|1910 (official estimate)||2,400,000|
|2003 (official estimate)||33,333,648|
|2016 (calculation for North Sudan)||36,729,501|
The average age of the population is 19.6 years (as of 2016). The fertility rate per woman was 3.7 children in 2016. Only 12% of all women had access to contraception. The average life expectancy is 64.1 years, being 62.0 years for men and 66.3 years for women (as of 2016).
According to the UN's mean population forecast, a population of over 80 million is expected for the year 2050 and around 138 million for the year 2100.
The percentages still refer to Sudan, including South Sudan, which split off in July 2011. Before that time, 36% of the population were of Arab descent (Sudanese Arabs).
The second largest ethnic group in the country were the Dinka with 12% , who represent the dominant population group in South Sudan. In addition, 9% of the Nubians live in the north on the Nile , who have also lived across the border in southern Egypt for thousands of years. The third largest people were the Nuer with 6% of the total population. The Azande with 5% were historically the politically most influential ethnic group in the south until they were marginalized like the other black Africans under the Turkish rule in the 19th century and partly served as the basis for the slave trade . A minority were the Bari in the southeast with 3%. A total of 52% of the population of the undivided country were black Africans .
Before the partition, 9% belonged to the Kushitic peoples, of which the Bedscha form the overwhelming majority with 8%.
2% were previously foreigners - mostly refugees before various wars in Africa as well as Europeans - and 1% of other affiliations.
English is widely used as the official language. Around half of the Sudanese speak Arabic , which is mainly spoken in the north (42 percent of them speak it as their mother tongue, in the south Sudan Arabic is used as the lingua franca ). In the southern half, Nilo-Saharan languages are spoken predominantly , including the Nilotic languages Nuer-Dinka (12 percent Dinka , 6 percent Nuer ; spoken mainly in the south) and Bari (3 percent; in the southeast) and Nubian (9 percent; in the middle Nile). The third largest language group are the Cushitic languages , of which the Bedscha (8 percent; in the northeast) is spoken by far the most . Ubang languages are also spoken - the most important is Azande (5 percent; in the southwest), a small group of the population also speaks Ndogo .
In Sudan, which included South Sudan until July 2011, around 70% of the population were Sunni Muslims, 25% followers of ethnic religions and 5% Christians . The non-Muslims live mainly in the south of the country and in Khartoum. With the conversion to Islam or Christianity a social advancement is also connected. The self-assessed attribution to a religion therefore also corresponds to a social classification in the south. Different African religions have influenced the two Abrahamic religions to varying degrees .
The Sunni Islam is the clearly dominant religion in Sudan, but was not in the status of a constitutional state religion levied. At the same time, however, Islam has been favored by the government since 1989 and treated like a state religion. The current Sharia laws are part of a state process of Islamization that the Muslim Brotherhood under Hasan at-Turabi has agreed to. The followers of Muhammad Ahmad , who proclaimed himself Mahdi , fell into the background politically after the suppression of the Mahdi uprising . Various Sufi orders ( Tariqa ) have spread widely among the Muslim population . These include the Qadiriyya , the brotherhoods of the Sammaniya introduced in the 19th century and, above all, the Khatmiyya . In the traditionally liberal Sudanese society, popular Islamic rituals such as the tsar cult assert themselves against official Islam .
The majority of Christians are supporters of the Roman Catholic Church in Sudan, which began missionary work in the south around 1900 in the region around Wau at the same time as the British Anglicans around Bor . The American Presbyterian Church found its field of activity among the Nuer on the Upper Nile . Since the end of the civil war, American evangelical groups have been expanding in the south. There are some Copts in the north, some of whom come from Egypt.
In an African comparison, traditional religions such as the Dinka are still more widespread in South Sudan . Non-religious worldviews are rare.
Sudan does not have an adequate social security system. Social security and medical care are inadequate. 4.6 million depend on humanitarian aid. The independence of the Republic of South Sudan in July 2011 and the civil war that flared up there again and again caused countless South Sudanese to seek refuge in Sudan. In this politically unstable situation, the state lacks the resources to adequately provide basic services such as education, health, water supply and sanitary facilities. In addition, recurring droughts in the east of the country make it difficult to supply the population with food and water.
|year||Life expectancy in
Source: World Bank
More than two years after the peace agreement between the Khartoum government and the Sudanese People's Liberation Army (SPLA) was signed in 2005, which ended the 21-year civil war, the number of internally displaced persons is still estimated at five million people, including nearly two million in the Darfur region. After the agreement, it was mainly displaced persons from the south of the country who opened up new opportunities to return. Still, Sudan remains the country with the most internally displaced people in the world, according to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC) in Geneva.
The slavery in Sudan can be proven with sources up to ancient Egyptian times. It was still to be found in the 20th century, despite the British efforts to abolish it in Anglo-Egyptian Sudan in the 19th century.
The history of Sudan goes back to the time of the pharaohs . For ancient Egypt, Nubia was important as a supplier of gold and slaves; at the beginning of the 12th dynasty (1991–1785 BC) it was incorporated into the Egyptian heartland. As a result of the dissolution of the New Kingdom in the 12th century BC BC originated in Nubia in the 9th century BC. The state of Kush , which existed until the 4th century AD. In the years 712–664 BC BC Kush ruled the "Kushitic dynasty" of all of Egypt.
Around the same time as the Christianization of the region, the three Nubian kingdoms Nobatia, Makuria and Alodia were formed by the sixth century AD. In 651, Egypt, now ruled by Muslim Arabs, concluded a peace treaty with Nubia; he established relatively stable relationships until the 14th century. In Central Sudan, the sultanates of Darfur and Sannar emerged , which were important until the 18th century. After Christianization and the emergence of Christian kingdoms, Sudan - with the exception of the south - was Islamized between the 14th and 16th centuries .
In the early 19th century, the Ottoman viceroys of Egypt began to conquer Sudan. The Mahdi uprising took place against the Egyptian occupation from 1881 to 1899 under the Islamic political leader Muhammad Ahmad , the self-proclaimed Mahdi . This is considered to be the first successful uprising of an African country against colonialism and led to the formation of its own state at the end of the 19th century. The so-called Caliphate of Omdurman existed for 15 years and was destroyed in 1898 by an Anglo-Egyptian force in the Battle of Omdurman . After the reconquest of Sudan, a British-Egyptian condominium was built in 1899 . In fact, Sudan remained a British colony until 1953.
After the fall of King Faruq of Egypt in 1952 and a phase of preparatory handover of power, the way to independence was clear for Sudan. On January 1, 1956, the Republic of Sudan was proclaimed after a referendum. The National Union Party (Umma Party, UP for short) emerged victorious from the parliamentary elections and its chairman Ismail al-Azhari became the country's first prime minister. Due to internal party differences, his rival Abdullah Chalil became the new prime minister in the same year . Because of the further instability of the coalition government and an allegedly threatened Egyptian invasion, Chalil turned in 1958 with a request to the Commander in Chief of the armed forces, General Ibrahim Abbud , to intervene. After the military coup, Abbud was increasingly confronted with revolts, conspiracies and the civil war in South Sudan . Since he could not cope with these problems, he resigned due to public protests in 1964 and handed over the official business to a civilian government under Prime Minister Sirr al-Chatim al-Khalifa . Ismail al-Azhari became chairman of acting as head of state sovereignty Council . In November 1964 the active and passive right to vote for women was introduced.
In the following years, no political stability could be achieved. In 1965 Muhammad Ahmad Mahdschub , in 1966 Sadiq al-Mahdi , in 1967 again Muhammad Ahmad Mahdschub and in 1969 Babikar Awadullah became Prime Minister.
Colonel Jafar an-Numairi used this situation in 1969 for another military coup. Numairi's policy was based on his Egyptian model, Gamal Abdel Nasser, and so some socialist and pan-Arab reforms were carried out. The Sudanese Socialist Union (SSU) was installed as the sole party in the state. In 1971 he was briefly ousted by a communist coup, but then reinstated. He was then elected President, and in 1972 he succeeded in ending a 17 year long civil war between the Sudanese government and the rebels of South Sudan (SPLA) with the Addis Ababa Agreement. In 1981 he turned to an Islamist government. In 1983 he introduced Sharia law throughout the country, including what is now the autonomous South Sudan. In violation of the Addis Ababa Agreement, he dissolved the South Sudanese government. In this way he drove the renewal of the civil war. The army under General Swar ad-Dahab used the political unrest in the country in 1985 to launch another military coup and hold elections. The Sharia remained in force. Sadiq al-Mahdi was re-elected Prime Minister in 1986.
In 1989, due to increasing political instability, there was a military coup under Lieutenant General Umar al-Bashir , who returned to Numairi's politics. Although he has since ruled the country unchallenged as chairman of the "National Command Council for the Salvation of the Nation", he tried in vain to regain power over the south. From 1983 to 2005 Sudan was continuously in the civil war. In 2005, a peace agreement was signed between the government in Khartoum and the SPLA, the main South Sudanese rebel group. It grants South Sudan autonomy and provided for a referendum on the independence of South Sudan for 2011, which was held from January 9th to January 15th and finally led to the independence of South Sudan in 2011.
On April 11, 2019, after 30 years in office , Umar al-Bashir was arrested and deposed in a military coup and a state of emergency was declared. The military leadership and the civilian opposition struggled for power until an agreement was reached on the formation of a joint transitional government in July 2019.
After the military coup on April 11, 2019, the incumbent president was ousted and the constitution was repealed. Until the planned new election in 2022, a “sovereign council” consisting of five military personnel and five civilians as well as an eleventh person, whose appointment both sides have agreed, is to rule the country. Abdalla Hamdok was sworn in as Prime Minister in August 2019 and presented his cabinet in September.
Sudan is a federal republic under the former 1998 constitution and has been ruled by a military government since 1989 . The state religion is Islam. According to Article 65 of the Constitution, Islamic Sharia is the primary source of law. The president is elected directly by the people every five years. In the elections between December 13 and 22, 2000, the National Congress Party (NCP) won an absolute majority of the seats, while the opposition parties boycotted the election . The 2005 elections, in which the opposition parties also took part, were also won by the NCP under al-Bashir. All Sudanese aged 17 and over have the right to vote . In the 2019 democracy index of the British magazine The Economist, Sudan ranks 147th out of 167 countries, making it one of the authoritarian states. In the country report Freedom in the World 2017 by the US non-governmental organization Freedom House , the country's political system is rated as “not free”. According to the report, freedom of expression, political rights and civil rights are not respected in the country.
As of 2005, the National Congress Party (NCP) and the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) ruled together in the government of national unity . This division of power was agreed in the peace agreement of 2005 and should prepare the referendum in January 2011 after the free elections in April 2010. The National Congress Party came to power with the military coup in 1989 under Umar Hasan Ahmad al-Bashir and exercised sole rule until 2005, while the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement fought for the independence of South Sudan until 2005. With the peace agreement, the autonomous region of South Sudan was created, which the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement administered alone. The head of government of the Autonomous Region of South Sudan was also Vice President of the state. On July 9, 2011, South Sudan became independent as the Republic of South Sudan.
The post of Prime Minister, which was abolished after the 1989 coup, was reinstated in March 2017.
Long-time leader of the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), John Garang , was killed in a helicopter crash on July 30, 2005. The news of the death of the vice-president of the central government, who was sworn in on July 9, initially sparked fears of a renewed outbreak of civil war in South Sudan, when 130 people were killed and more than 400 injured in violent clashes in Khartoum, Malakal and Juba . On August 5, Garang's long-time deputy, Salva Kiir Mayardit, was appointed the new head of the SPLM and was also sworn in as the new Vice President of Sudan on August 11.
In the government of national unity presented on September 20, which comprised 29 ministers, the National Congress Party (NCP) headed by President Umar Hasan Ahmad al-Bashir retained four of five key ministries: home affairs, defense, energy and finance. Only the Foreign Ministry was entrusted to the SPLM politician Lam Akol . The SPLM had also claimed the Ministry of Oil to control oil revenues (and the South's constitutionally guaranteed share). Mayardit eventually relented so as not to delay the establishment of the government any further. For this he received strong criticism from the SPLM, since the government in this form of the contractually guaranteed power-sharing hardly complies with it. The entire administration and all other political institutions also remained entirely in the hands of the NCP. The opposition in the north of the country withdrew its ministers from the government because they did not see themselves adequately taken into account in the number and distribution of departments.
Mayardit presented the first government of the Autonomous Region of South Sudan on October 21, 2005, which he presided over as head of government.
In addition to the form of Islam, which was introduced by the Islamic regime in Sudan and ascribes a subordinate role to women, there are strong cultural currents such as the Tsar cult in which women play an important spiritual role and which are still practiced today. At the end of the 1940s, the first women's associations were formed in Sudan, from which the Sudanese Women's Union emerged in 1951 . Since then, a large number of women's organizations have emerged, including the New Sudan Women Federation (NSWF) and the Sudan Women's Voice for Peace (SWVP) and the Women Action Group (WAG), which have also tried to advance the peace process in Sudan.
The positioning of these organizations in relation to the Sharia-based legislation is very different. On the one hand, women are assigned a subordinate role and limited rights, especially in family legislation, on the other hand, the law guarantees equal rights with regard to the right to vote, labor law as well as education and health. Another activity is the fight against the continuing prevalence of female genital cutting . According to the United Nations, nine out of ten girls are still affected (as of 2020). This was made a criminal offense at the beginning of July 2020: Anyone who undertakes such an intervention can receive a prison sentence of up to three years. Another improvement for women followed in mid-July 2020: They can now travel with their children without first having to obtain the consent of male relatives. Women are now allowed to wear pants again and do sports in public. These changes are seen in connection with the fact that women played a major role during the 2018/2019 mass protests against the ousted long-term president Omar al-Bashir.
Another important institution in Sudan is the private Ahfad University for women . This is created exclusively for female students and, as one of the few universities in the Arab world, has an institute for women studies in addition to natural, social, agricultural and medical faculties .
Despite the 2006 peace agreement between the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), the ruling Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), conflicts and human rights violations continue. The civilian population in Darfur is particularly hard hit by the aftermath of the genocide. Government forces and government allied militias and militant groups continue to commit crimes against civilians. They murder, rape and bomb entire residential areas. Assaults and fighting by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) in the south of the country killed an estimated 2,500 people and displaced 359,000 people during 2009. In total, it is estimated that since the conflict broke out in 1983, there have been 3.5 million people on the run in South Sudan.
According to the UN , around 2.7 million civilians are on the run within the country and more than 250,000 people have already fled to neighboring Chad . According to the UN, an estimated 200,000 people died as a result of the conflict in 2006, and up to 100,000 more could die by 2008.
On March 4, 2009, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant for President al-Bashir for two war crimes and five crimes against humanity. The arrest warrant for President al-Bashir was the third issued by the ICC in connection with Darfur. Also on March 4, 2009, immediately after the ICC issued an arrest warrant for President al-Bashir, the government expelled 13 international humanitarian organizations from the country and ordered the closure of three national human rights and humanitarian aid organizations. Journalists continued to face intimidation and arrests by the secret service.
The judicial system is considered unfair. Between July 2008 and June 2009, 103 people were sentenced to death by special courts for trial of terrorist offenses. According to Amnesty, cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments such as flogging continued to be imposed and carried out in 2009. Arbitrary arrests, torture, and other serious mistreatment occurred. In May 2014, the death sentence against the Christian Maryam Yahya Ibrahim Ishaq attracted international attention .
In July 2020, as a result of the revolution against Omar al-Bashir, some laws from the penal code were overturned: public flogging is now prohibited and the death penalty for homosexuals and the apostasy law , which punishes apostasy with death, has been abolished. Genital mutilation was made a criminal offense. The alcohol ban for non-Muslims no longer exists either. The fact that the end of the powerful Takfir practice was announced was seen as a big step : it has so far allowed people to be labeled unbelievers for allegedly breaking the rules. This was often used by fundamentalists as a pretext to condemn people to various types of punishment.
Rape and other violence against women remained widespread, with attacks on villages and areas near IDP camps. As a result of the civil war, many children are forcibly recruited as child soldiers . There is a climate of discrimination and violence against sexual minorities. Homosexuality is criminalized by the state. Several cases of flogging became known from 2010. One case describes how male transvestites were punished for wearing women's clothes and make-up, another a group of young women in Khartoum who were flogged for wearing pants. As part of a judicial reform in July 2020, the death penalty for same-sex sex was abolished, but homosexuals still face up to seven years in prison. The LGBT organization Bedayaa (Arabic for beginning ) speaks of a “big step towards reforming the judicial system”.
In the 2017 press freedom ranking published by Reporters Without Borders , Sudan was ranked 174th out of 180 countries. The situation of press freedom in the country is therefore one of the worst in the world.
Darfur was in 2003 the scene of a bloody rebellion against the Arab-dominated Sudanese government with two black African rebel groups - the Sudan Liberation Army ( Sudan Liberation Army , SLA) and the Justice and Equality Movement ( Justice and Equality Movement , JEM), who accuse the government To suppress black Africans in favor of the Arabs. In return, the government began a campaign with air bombardments and ground attacks carried out by an Arab militia, the Janjawid . However, the Sudanese government denied complicity in the crimes committed by the militias in Darfur. Due to international pressure, a ceasefire agreement was signed on April 8, 2004, and the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS), with logistical support from NATO, was supposed to ensure compliance with this agreement .
In September 2005, however, there was new fighting in the region. The background to this was the peace talks that resumed in Abuja on September 15 . A splinter group of the SLA boycotted the negotiations and raided aid supplies and government buildings. On September 29, 30 people died after attacks by the Janjawid on a refugee camp in North Darfur; on October 9, a faction of the JEM kidnapped 38 AMIS soldiers who were later released. On October 7th, SLA rebels killed four soldiers from the AMIS peacekeeping force who only have observer status and are not even allowed to intervene in cases of rape. A report published on December 12 by the human rights organization Human Rights Watch renewed the allegations made since 2004 against the Sudanese government of being involved in the planning and execution of war crimes in Darfur at the highest levels, which the government rejected. The International Criminal Court (ICC) has been investigating war criminals in the Darfur conflict since March 2005 .
At the beginning of February 2006, the armed conflict intensified again. The commander of the AMIS mission blamed the rebel movements for this. They had triggered counterattacks by the Janjawid on refugee camps by attacking the two government-owned cities of Shearia and Golo. Up to 70,000 people had left the refugee camps in response to these attacks. According to independent information, however, it was still mainly the militiamen allied with the Sudanese government who took action against refugees and the foreign aid organizations. On May 5, 2006, the Sudanese government and the major faction of the Sudanese Liberation Army (SLA) under Minna Minnawi signed a peace agreement in Abuja . The other faction of the SLA under Abdelwahid al-Nur and the Movement for Justice and Equality (JEM) reject approval of the agreement because they do not share their main demands for the immediate creation of a Darfur region instead of the three states and the establishment of a second vice-president for Darfur see considered.
Most of the rebels who rejected the agreement formed the National Redemption Front (NRF) and declared the ceasefire over. New fighting in Darfur forced the World Food Program to cease its work in mid-June 2006 , putting 400,000 people at risk of famine. The Janjawid had resumed their raids within the week after the agreement was signed. The Sudanese government then sent additional troops to Darfur and launched an offensive in northern Darfur that has been ongoing since August 28, 2006 with the support of the Minnawi SLA in order to push back the rebels of the NRF.
A peace agreement was signed on August 31, 2020.
The east of Sudan, which is mainly inhabited by the Bedscha and Rashaida ethnic groups , is a poor and underdeveloped region, whose inhabitants hardly benefit from the extraction of the mineral resources there or from the income from oil exports. Many Bedscha and Rashaida therefore feel marginalized and oppressed by the central government in Khartoum . The resistance organizations united in the Eastern Front carried out repeated attacks on government institutions. During the peace negotiations between the government and the rebels of Eastern Sudan, which took place in Eritrea from the beginning of 2006, a ceasefire agreement was signed on June 26, 2006 and a peace treaty on October 14, 2006.
Relations with the countries of the Middle East
Sudan was one of the few Arab-Sunni countries to have very close ties with Iran . Even if the population in Iran is Shiite, Islam was still seen as a connection to one another. The state armaments company Military Industry Corporation is subordinate to the Defense Ministry of Sudan, but 35% belongs to an Iranian investor and supplies groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas with weapons. In the past, Sudan acted as an intermediary between Saudi Arabia , the Sunni Arab states and Iran. But after most of the Arab states had classified the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization, relations with the other Arab states were poor. These are part of the ruling National Congress Party , which is why Sudan grants asylum to the Muslim Brotherhood from Egypt and other countries. Saudi Arabia accused Sudan of supplying Iranian weapons to Shiite rebels in Yemen .
That all changed in March 2015 when Sudan surprisingly became part of the Saudi coalition in Yemen and broke with Iran. The Sudanese newspaper Sudan Tribune showed a cartoon about this reorientation with the then President Umar al-Bashir , who runs away from revolutionary leader Ali Khamene'i laden with a sack of money , who shouts after him: “You too, Brutus?!? “When Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iran on January 3, 2016, Sudan followed suit only a day later.
At the time, Sudan had good relations with Qatar and Turkey . Together they formed the supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood in the conflicts during the state crisis in Egypt in 2013/2014 and in the civil war in Libya in 2014/15 .
Relations with South Sudan
After decades of civil war in South Sudan from 1955 to 1972 and again from 1983 to 2005, the autonomous region of South Sudan was formed in 2005. It has approximately 8.27 million residents in 10 states .
An independence referendum was held from January 9-15, 2011 , after which 99% of voters spoke out in favor of independence. On July 9, 2011, South Sudan gained independence. The declaration of independence was recognized by Sudan on July 8th.
Since then, the two states have been bitter enemies. The reason for the dispute is the oil , which is located in South Sudan. But South Sudan is not by the sea and so cannot export the oil, so it has to be transported through Sudan first, which demands money for the transport. South Sudan does not accept this. On February 4, 2012, the Sudanese President al-Bashir said that a war between the two states was possible. On February 11, the two states signed a non-aggression pact in Addis Ababa . However, new attacks are reported again and again. The United Nations and the US called for an end to the violence. On April 12, 2012, the Sudanese government announced that it would break off all negotiations with “the enemy” and decided on general mobilization.
In the wake of the unrest in South Sudan , negotiations began again with Sudan, in which al-Bashir proposed the formation of joint army units.
Relations with Chad
Because of the conflict over Darfur and the associated rebel activities in the border area, Chad declared a state of war with Sudan on December 23, 2005 . However, Chad stated that this was not a declaration of war. In April 2006, the neighboring state to the west broke off diplomatic relations with Sudan because it accused Sudan of supporting the opposition FUC. Up to 500 people were previously killed in their attack on N'Djamena .
On August 9, 2006, the President of Chad, Idriss Déby , and his Sudanese counterpart al-Bashir announced the immediate resumption of diplomatic relations and border traffic. The normalization of relations was achieved through the mediation of the Libyan leader Muammar al-Gaddafi and Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade .
Relationship with Saudi Arabia and the USA
Because of Osama bin Laden's criticism of the royal house of Saudi Arabia and the Saudi policy in the Second Gulf War , Saudi Arabia declared him a persona non grata and attempts were made to get hold of his person. Because of this threat, Osama bin Laden fled to Sudan in 1991, which was internationally isolated due to a military coup in 1989 by General al-Bashir and his Islamic fundamentalist efforts. Here bin Laden was mainly active in business: with his construction company, he tackled the construction of a new highway from Khartoum to Bur Sudan and founded a commercial bank. In 1994 his Saudi citizenship was revoked due to his international terrorist activities. Under Saudi and US pressure, Sudan expelled Osama bin Laden from the country in 1996, who then traveled to Afghanistan .
Despite giving in, Sudan was still considered a terrorist state in the USA and in 1998, following the bombing of the US embassies in Nairobi , Kenya , and Dar es Salaam , Tanzania , the USA retaliated against the Ash Shifa pharmaceutical factory in the a poison gas factory was suspected. Any involvement in the bombings or the production of poison gas in the bombed factory has not yet been proven.
To end the fighting in Darfur, President Barack Obama relied on more dialogue than the previous administration: In contrast to the US special envoy of the Bush administration for Sudan, Richard Williamson, Barack Obama's special envoy Scott Gration planned both with the various rebels and with the Government in Khartoum to negotiate; in particular, he focused on bringing the many rebel groups closer together. He spoke out in favor of a continuation of the US embargo.
After 27 years, under the outgoing President Donald Trump , the United States removed Sudan from the terror list in December 2020. This was preceded by a deal in which the government of Sudan initially normalized relations with Israel and promised compensation for the families of the victims of the attacks on the USS Cole in 2000 and on the embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.
Relationship with Israel
Relations between Sudan and Israel are considered tense. After an arms factory in Sudan exploded on October 24, 2012, the Sudanese government accused Israel of being responsible. There were also other incidents, such as in 2009 when a truck convoy was bombed from the air, whereupon the government also blamed Israel for the attacks. It was speculated that the truck would deliver weapons to Hamas .
Relationship to Germany
In September 2019, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas was the first Western chief diplomat to visit Sudan after the overthrow of Umar al-Bashir. In February 2020, Development Minister Gerd Müller and Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier traveled to Khartoum. Chancellor Merkel met the Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok for a working meeting in Berlin. In the same month, the Bundestag also passed a resolution calling on the German government to support Sudan and to resume bilateral development cooperation. Germany supports the transitional government through stabilization projects to promote the rule of law, to build government capacities and to mediate peace, among other things.
At the beginning of June 2020, the UN Security Council unanimously approved the mandate introduced by Germany and Great Britain for the United Nations' new political mission in Sudan (UNITAMS). UNITAMS is to accompany the transition to democracy from the beginning of 2021. In Darfur, Germany was involved in the peace mission of the United Nations and the African Union ( UNAMID ) with members of the police and the armed forces until December 2020 .
The Hala'ib Triangle is claimed by Egypt and has been administered since 2000 after Sudanese troops voluntarily withdrew from the area. An agreement is still pending. The Ilemi Triangle was abandoned by Sudan in 1950, but is now on the border between South Sudan, Kenya and Ethiopia.
Membership in organizations
Sudan is a member of the following international organizations:
|Date of joining||organization||abbreviation||comment|
|1963||Organization for African Unity||OAU||Forerunner of the AU|
|1969||Organization of the Islamic Conference||OIC|
|1981||Preferential Trade Area for Eastern and Southern Africa||PTA||Forerunner of COMESA|
|1986||Intergovernmental Authority on Drought and Development||IGADD||Forerunner of IGAD|
|1994||Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa||COMESA||Succession to the PTA|
|1996||Intergovernmental Authority on Development||IGAD||Successor to IGADD|
|1998||Community of the Sahel-Saharan States||CEN-SAD|
|2001||African Union||AU||Succession to the OAU|
Since Sudan's independence, which was proclaimed January 1, 1956, the military has played a decisive role in the country's politics. Today's Sudan People's Armed Forces were officially re-established in 1990 after the military coup in 1989 and are subordinate to the President or Chairman of the “Sovereign Council”. General Umar al-Bashir held the presidency from a military coup in 1989 until he was overthrown in 2019, when the army leadership took the lead in the state. A “Sovereign Council” of eleven members, five of whom are military, has been in power since August 2019. The commander-in-chief is also chairman of this council until further notice.
In 2017, Sudan spent almost 3.2 percent of its economic output or 4.4 billion US dollars on its armed forces. The country’s military spending is therefore only surpassed by Algeria in Africa . A total of 30.9 percent of government spending went to the military, which is one of the highest proportions in the world.
Until July 9, 2011, Sudan was divided into 25 (until the end of 2005: 26) federal states ( wilayat ), which were again divided into a total of 133 districts. Of the 26 states, the ten southernmost formed the autonomous region of South Sudan . On July 9, 2011, South Sudan gained independence as the Republic of South Sudan . Through the division of states, Sudan is now divided into 18 states.
The cities with over one million inhabitants (2007 calculation) are Omdurman (3,127,802 inhabitants), the capital Khartoum (2,207,794 inhabitants) and al-Chartum Bahri (1,725,570 inhabitants), which are in close proximity to the confluence of the White Nile with the Blue Nile. All other cities remain below the limit of 500,000 inhabitants with the exception of Nyala in South Darfur . The city of Bur Sudan, which has the country's only sea port, is indispensable for foreign trade. Along the Nile you can find the following larger cities from north to south: Wadi Halfa , Atbara , Kusti and Rabak .
Sudan is the fourth largest economy in sub-Saharan Africa after Nigeria, South Africa and Angola. The gross domestic product (adjusted for purchasing power) per capita amounts to 4,447 euros (as of 2016), making Sudan one of the richer countries in Africa. Nevertheless, in terms of standard of living, Sudan can be classified in the lower categories worldwide and wealth is extremely unevenly distributed. Another problem is high inflation. In 2017 it was 26.9%. The state only takes 6.9% of economic output as tax revenue and therefore has to go into debt.
At the same time, Sudan has rich natural resources and a relatively well-trained workforce. Due to the ongoing conflicts in the country, the Sudanese government has invested considerable sums of the revenues from oil exports in the armaments budget. Sudan's infrastructure, especially in the areas of energy supply, water / wastewater, telecommunications and transport, is insufficiently developed. There is a great need for development in all areas.
The unemployment rate was 19.6% in 2017, most jobs are informal and underemployment is widespread. The total number of employees is estimated at 11.9 million for 2007; 25.7% of these are women (2017).
The most important branch of the economy is oil export, followed by agriculture, which accounts for around a third of economic output.
In 2017, the country was ranked 164th out of 180 countries in the index for economic freedom . The economy in Sudan is very heavily controlled by the state. In the Corruption Perception Index by Transparency International , Sudan was ranked 175th out of 180 countries in 2017, making it one of the most corrupt countries in the world.
All GDP values are given in US dollars ( purchasing power parity ). Figures for GDP per capita are valid for the whole of Sudan until 2011 and from then on only for Northern Sudan.
(purchasing power parity)
|21.82 billion||28.78 billion||40.89 billion||54.33 billion||81.44 billion||126.87 billion||139.29 billion||151.20 billion||160.10 billion||157.07 billion||167.22 billion||164.30 billion||149.54 billion||155.23 billion||163.09 billion||169.80 billion||178.03 billion||187.03 billion|
GDP per capita
(purchasing power parity)
(as a percentage of GDP)
Natural resources and energy
Sudan has abundant deposits of mineral resources such as petroleum , iron , marble , gold and uranium . According to US estimates from the 1990s, oil reserves amounted to around three billion barrels . By 2011 that estimate had risen to five billion barrels, most of it in South Sudan, although at least two billion barrels have been produced since the 1990s. Thanks to modern technology, this amount should continue to increase.
Most of the oil fields have not yet been developed - in some cases even the concessions have not yet been awarded. However, the Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Company is working to remedy this.
One third of Sudanese and South Sudanese oil goes to China; The African country now accounts for an estimated six to eight percent of Beijing's total oil imports. An increase to 800,000 barrels a day is expected. However, the independence of South Sudan changed the situation.
South Sudan stopped exporting oil in 2012 because of ongoing disputes with Sudan over the level of transit fees. South Sudan thus lost 98 percent of its state revenue, as exports are currently only possible via the Sudan's pipelines. Sudan, on the other hand, is missing US $ 2.4 billion in fiscal 2012 due to a lack of transit fees. The government in Khartoum must now adopt austerity measures. In 2014, Sudan and South Sudan agreed to jointly operate oil production in South Sudan again and to protect the oil fields there from the chaos of civil war in South Sudan by means of mixed associations of both armies.
In the past, a system of joint ownership rights to pasture and arable land was common. Some families also had private land rights. A law passed in 1926 made non-private land subject to the retention of title by the colonial state, but in practice traditional land law was retained. After the Second World War , the British began to introduce mechanized agriculture with the original aim of feeding their own troops. Changes to the law around 1970 enabled free access to land resources . Together with the mechanization of agriculture in fertile areas, financed by World Bank credits, this led to expropriations and the emergence of a class of landowners ( suitcase farmers ).
About seven percent of the area is used for agriculture. An important source of foreign currency in the country is cotton , which is mainly grown in the irrigation areas of the Jazira plains between the White and Blue Nile. Other products are peanuts , sesame , millet , sorghum , wheat and sugar cane . Sudan provides about 80 percent of the world's production of gum arabic , which is obtained from the resin of a species of acacia . Half of the gum arabic produced comes from the Kurdufan Province , a quarter each from Kassala and Darfur.
The main importing countries (as of 2016) are the People's Republic of China (22.7 percent), the United Arab Emirates (8.8 percent), India (8.4 percent), Egypt (6.0 percent), Saudi Arabia (4.6 percent) Percent) and Turkey (4.3 percent).
The state budget in 2016 comprised expenditure of the equivalent of 11.48 billion US dollars ; this contrasted with revenues of the equivalent of 7.30 billion US dollars. This results in a budget deficit of 4.2% of GDP .
The national debt amounted to 60.6 billion in 2016 US dollars or 64.2% of GDP. After the secession of South Sudan, the north initially took over the entire national debt of the entire state; an agreement on a possible division of the liabilities is still pending.
In 2006 the share of government expenditure (as a percentage of GDP) was in the following areas:
In 1970 there was only one paved road between Khartoum and Wad Madani . Until 1980, the rest of the route via Kassala to Port Sudan was paved in stages and with the help of several countries (approximately 1200 kilometers). In 1990 there were around 3000–3500 kilometers of paved roads out of 20,000–25,000 kilometers of the entire road network. For 1996, 11,900 kilometers of unpaved trunk roads and 4,320 kilometers of asphalt roads are given. Since 2000 there has been an accelerated expansion of all highways in Northern Sudan in parallel to the economic upturn due to oil exports. At the end of 2008, the road connections between the cities in the area of El Obeid in the west via Kassala and Port Sudan in the east were newly paved. In the north, a cross connection from Port Sudan via Atbara and Merowe to Dongola is paved. The completion of the remaining sections to Wadi Halfa, via Abu Hamad and along the Nile is expected in 2009. A bridge over the Nile at Merowe was inaugurated in 2008, and two more bridges, at Atbara and Dongola, are under construction.
In South Sudan, it was only possible from 2000 to expand the road from Lokichoggio (Kenya) to Juba to supply the population affected by the civil war. Since the end of the war in 2005, most of the dirt roads have first had to be cleared of mines before they can be covered with an all-weather gravel surface. The important supply route to Gulu (Uganda) was still in poor condition in 2008, but the completion of a continuous gravel road from Juba via Wau to Khartoum was reported.
The railways in Sudan only play a subordinate role in the country's traffic today. Until the 1960s, however, it had almost a transport monopoly for long-distance land transport. In addition to the nationwide network in Kapspur, there was also a light rail network with a 610 mm gauge, the Jazira Railway , which was created as part of the Jazira project and was of regional importance.
Before July 9, 2011, Sudan had around 4068 kilometers of waterways within its national borders , of which 1723 kilometers (Blue and White Nile) are navigable all year round. Important river ports are Juba , Khartoum, Kusti , Malakal , Nimule and Wadi Halfa .
The pipeline network covers 2,365 kilometers for crude oil, 810 kilometers for petroleum products and 156 kilometers for gas . Since April 2006, Sudan has been producing 365,000 barrels of crude oil a day through oil pipelines, although capacities have already been expanded to 500,000 barrels a day - due to technical problems with the oil pipeline built by Malaysia , this potential cannot yet be fully exploited.
In 2016, 26.2% of the population had access to the Internet.
There are numerous Arabic-language regional newspapers in Sudan. There are also national newspapers in Arabic and English.
The state-owned Sudan National Broadcasting Corporation produces the Arabic television program Sudan TV and radio programs in Arabic, English, French and Swahili. All media are controlled by the Sudanese government. In Bristol, England, the opposition alliance , the National Democratic Alliance, produces the Voice of Sudan program in English a few hours a week and broadcasts it via an FM station and via livestream.
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