South Sudan: The Newest Nation in the World

Last Saturday, the Republic of South Sudan declared its independence, creating the newest nation in the world -- the 193rd nation to join the United Nations. The new country has been in the making since a referendum last January, when nearly 4 million southern Sudanese voted to secede from Sudan by a margin of more than 98 percent. The region has been involved in civil wars for at least the past 50 years, and the days-old nation is already battling several armed groups within its new borders. Many issues still remain unresolved -- the oil-rich region continues to rely on pipelines that run through Sudan, and a revenue-sharing agreement has not been reached. The new nation, which is comprised of more than 200 ethnic groups, has a largely rural economy, and poverty, civil warfare, and political instability will be the biggest of many challenges for the new administration. Gathered here are scenes from South Sudan as it made its debut on the world stage this weekend.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Kerstin Joensson / AP

    Photos of the Week: 10/3-10/9

    A sandstorm in Egypt, flooding in South Carolina, the release of a black-footed ferret, an Israeli spacecraft, hazy skies in Indonesia, a volcanic eruption near Quito, a massive traffic jam near Beijing, and much more.

  • Nicky Loh / Reuters

    Taiwan's Kinmen Islands, Only a Few Miles From Mainland China

    Taiwan’s Great Kinmen Island and its neighbor islets, in a harbor just east of the Chinese city of Xiamen, are practically surrounded by the People's Republic of China—in some places barely more than a mile apart. Reuters reports that the island is now “eyeing closer commercial ties with China,” with “plans to build a bridge and set up a glittering free trade zone with the city.”

  • Toby Melville / Reuters

    Fall Is in the Air

    It's my favorite time of year once again—the autumnal equinox took place a couple weeks ago, marking the end of summer and the start of fall across the Northern Hemisphere.

  • © James Smart / National Geographic Photo Contest

    2015 National Geographic Photo Contest

    National Geographic Magazine has opened its annual photo contest, with the deadline for submissions coming up on November 16, 2015.

Join the Discussion