When unified (1956-2011), Sudan was Africa’s largest nation by area, and the site of its longest running civil war. In 2011, after decades of fighting broadly described as a conflict between the predominately “Arab” Muslim north and “African” Christian and animist south, Sudan split in two. Mistrust between Sudan and South Sudan lingers, and unresolved disputes still threaten to pull the two countries back to war. The north-south split did not resolve other simmering Sudanese conflicts, notably in Darfur, Blue Nile, and Southern Kordofan. Overlapping struggles between security forces and armed groups, among ethnic groups, and between nomadic and farming communities have caused extensive displacement and human suffering. Across the country, social tensions, economic pressures, and political dissent pose ongoing challenges for Sudan’s Islamist government, which came to power through a coup in 1989.
Date of Report: May 20, 2015
Order Number: IF10182
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