South Sudan Prepares for Independence Celebrations (PHOTOS)

 @MarkJohansonIBT
on July 07 2011 6:01 PM
Share this article

 

It is not so often that the world greets a new nation into its fold, but that will be the case this Saturday when South Sudan becomes the UN's 193rd member and the African Union's 54th.

After a long-fought and bitter war against Sudan's north, Independence comes to a people who were left marginalized, underdeveloped, and up against huge challenges in the unified Sudan.

Practice runs for Saturday's independence festivities are under way, featuring traditional dancers, the national choir, and South Sudan's military.  Everyone gathered together in the sweltering heat for a full dress rehearsal of the massive event.

Here's a look:

 

South Sudan (1 of 10)

A tribeswoman smiles during preparations for the independence day ceremony scheduled for July 9, in Juba July 1, 2011. South Sudan splits away from the north on July 9 to create Africa's newest nation after southerners voted for secession under terms of a peace deal reached in 2005 to end a north-south civil war. REUTERS

South Sudan (2 of 10)

A tribeswoman wears traditional clothes during preparations for the independence day ceremony, scheduled for July 9, in Juba July 1, 2011. South Sudan splits away from the north on July 9 to create Africa's newest nation after southerners voted for secession under terms of a peace deal reached in 2005 to end a north-south civil war. REUTERS

South Sudan (3 of 10)

Musicians sit before the start of a rehearsal of the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 5, 2011. REUTERS

South Sudan (4 of 10)

Men sing the South Sudan national anthem during a rehearsal of the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 5, 2011. REUTERS

South Sudan (5 of 10)

A traditionally dressed man dances during a rehearsal of the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 7, 2011. South Sudan splits away from the north on July 9 to create Africa's newest nation after southerners voted for secession under terms of a peace deal reached in 2005 to end a north-south civil war. REUTERS

South Sudan (6 of 10)

Members of the Agar Lmarol group from Lake state in Rumbek perform a traditional celebration dance during preparations for the Independence Day ceremony in Juba, South Sudan, July 6, 2011. South Sudan splits away from the north on July 9 to create Africa's newest nation after southerners voted for secession under terms of a peace deal reached in 2005 to end a north-south civil war. REUTERS

South Sudan (7 of 10)

A Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) soldier stands in line during a rehearsal of the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 5, 2011. REUTERS

More News from IBT MEDIA