South Sudan 311.
(photo credit: Charmaine Hedding)
ADDIS ABABA - The African Union admitted South Sudan as its 54th member after the new African country proclaimed independence from Sudan on July 9 following decades of conflict, the AU said.
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South Sudan is one of the world's poorest nations and has inherited a string of disputes with its northern neighbor after its people voted in a January referendum to break away from Sudan -- a decision accepted by Khartoum.
Representatives of the two countries are expected to resume AU-mediated talks next week on solving outstanding issues such as citizenship and oil revenue-sharing.
The Addis Ababa-based AU said late on Wednesday it had received more
than the required majority votes to admit South Sudan as a member
following a referendum held under the terms of a 2005 peace deal that
ended a 20-year war between north and south Sudan in which more than 2
million people died.
The AU said it will hold a flag-raising ceremony to mark the membership
of its newest constituent. The bloc's last entrant was Eritrea in 1993
after it split from Ethiopia following a 30-year war for independence.
The General Assembly admitted
South Sudan on July 14 as the 193rd member of the United Nations.