South Sudan has raised the flag of its new nation for the first time, as thousands gathered in the capital of Juba to celebrate the country’s birth. Russia, among other countries, has recognized South Sudan as a sovereign and independent state.
Earlier on Saturday, July 9, the country’s independence was recognized by the United Sates, Egypt and Sudan.
Russian envoy Mikhail Margelov delivered Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s message to South Sudan’s leader Salva Kiir in connection with the recognition of the young state. Medvedev said Russia was ready to actively cooperate with South Sudan on economic issues.
“I hope that our cooperation will contribute to stabilization and security development in Africa,” said the message.
As the Russian envoy told Vesti-24 news channel, the fact a new state appeared not as a result of a war, but following a peace agreement between Sudan and South Sudan was extremely important. Margelov also emphasized that Russia played a significant part in the birth of the new nation.
“Over the past two or three years Russia has been working hard to make this peaceful divorce possible. Eventually, it has taken place,” said Margelov. “Both sides have displayed political wisdom, shown restraint and demonstrated what I would call a strategic approach to their own future. The most important thing now is to see what’s going to happen here tomorrow and if inter-tribal clashes are going to flare up again,” he added.
South Sudan became the world’s newest country on Saturday officially breaking away from Sudan. The flag of Sudan was lowered and the flag of South Sudan was raised. The speaker of South Sudan’s legislature James Wani Igga read a formal proclamation of independence during a packed ceremony in the new country capital, Juba, and then Salva Kiir was sworn in as president. The news led to a street party; some South Sudanese wiped away tears of joy.
South Sudan is expected to become the 193rd country recognized by the United Nations next week and the 54th UN member state in Africa.