The General Assembly of the United Nations gave the green light to the candidacy of South Sudan as the 193rd member state after declaring its independence from Sudan on July 9th.
Welcome, South Sudan. Welcome to the community of nations, said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, this morning, amid a warm applause of the delegates and representatives of the now 193 member states.
In a thankful and joyful message, Riek Machar, Vice President of the newly born South Sudan, also had words of brotherhood for his new neighbors of the North in his first address to the General Assembly.
We do not harbor bitterness towards our former compatriots. We remain partners in peace and committed to the principles of good neighborliness, said Machar before a charming audience.
Moments after South Sudan was unanimously accepted as a member of the community of nations, its flag was raised, under a sunny sky, and placed alongside the 192 others, at the United Nations compound.
To my eyes, the rising flag symbolized the rising hopes of the people of South Sudan, all those who endured the long civil war, all those who lost so many loved ones, all those who left their homes and fled their communities, all those who held fast to hope. Now, they have reached an important milestone, said UN Secretary-General moments after the colorful flag was raised.
In apparent happiness, the Vice President of South Sudan explained the meaning of the colors of the flag that 5 days ago filled the streets of Juba, the capital of the newborn state.
The black means Sudan, the white stripes represent the fit for peace, the red is for the sacrifices we've made since centuries ago, the green is for the arable land that has protected all of us, the blue is the color of the Nile and the yellow is the star of hope of our country, said Machar.
The now neighbors of the newest country in the world also had charming words for that sovereign territory which was once part of the biggest nation in Africa.
Now a page has been turned. We and our brothers have left bitterness and the wounds of war behind us and are looking forward to the future, said Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, Ambassador of Sudan to the United Nations.
As the country's flag waved alongside the other 192, the newly appointed South Sudanese Ambassador, Ezekiel Gatkuoth, surprised the international community with some dance moves that ended a joyful ceremony.
Despite the charming messages, the international community also raised awareness for the many challenges that the 54th African country faces, and offered its support to a nation with a history overwhelmed by civil wars, human rights abuses and humanitarian crisis.