The Government of South Sudan (GOSS) has been increasingly pursuing its
own regional foreign policy. Now China
is solidifying its political relationship with South Sudan. China is opening a consulate in South Sudan's
capital, Juba. On September 1, a senior Chinese foreign ministry officer met
with the president of South Sudan (who is also the First Vice President of
Sudan). Now a consulate is not an embassy, but China may be looking toward 2011
when the referendum promised by the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement is
supposed to take place. South Sudan could become a separate country. Yes, it
would have oil.
2008: The Darfur rebel Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) Minnawi faction has
opened a new political front in its war with the government of Sudan. The SLM
announced that it will back South Sudan's leader, Salva Kiir, in the next
presidential election (scheduled for July 2009).
2008: UNAMID forces in Darfur depend on truck convoys to bring in basic
operating equipment. The last major UNAMID support convoy collected at El Obeid
(capital of North Kordofan state). El Obeid is in central Sudan - meaning that
UNAMID relies on the Sudan government (the chief prosecutor of the war in
Darfur) to allow it to receive equipment. From El Obeid the convoy travelled
around 600 kilometers to reach the UNAMID forces deployed in Darfur.
2008: Hijackers took control of an airliner that took off from an airfield in
south Darfur. The plane was supposed to fly to Khartoum but was diverted to the
Libyan oasis of Kufra. The passengers were released in Kufra
2008: UNAMID reported that a Sudanese security force (likely a police unit)
raided the Kalma refugee camp (South Darfur). At least 30 people died in the
attack. Sudan said that the security personnel were "looking for suspects." The
Sudanese government is also building a base near the camp. Rebels often use
refugee camps as rest and recuperation areas.
August 24, 2008:
UNAMIS (UN Mission in Sudan) police trainers are conducting a ten-day long
training program for a special joint police unit in the town of Abyei (which
lies in the oil-rich zone disputed by Sudan and South Sudan). UNAMIS is the
peacekeeping force created after South Sudan and Sudan signed the 2005
Comprehensive Peace Agreement. The joint police unit has 63 Sudanese policemen
and 105 members of the South Sudan Police Service.
the only problem area. The situation in the Nuba Mountains remains unstable.
The Nuba Mountains are a "transitional area" that is part of Sudan (ie, north
Sudan) has been promised local autonomy.