Sudan vs South Sudan: Difference and Comparison

Sudan and South Sudan were one country until recently in 2011. Although Africa makes significant contributions to its diverse flora and fauna, there is much more to learn about this continent.

Certain political factors in various regions of the continent need worldwide attention. The Republic of Sudan and South Sudan are two areas of Africa that need to be understood.

This article solely focuses on the differences both countries possess after the independence referendum in 2011.

This article mainly highlights the differences in their political orientations and visions and the reasons why Sudan broke off into two independent countries.

Key Takeaways

  1. Sudan is located in North Africa, while South Sudan is located in East-Central Africa.
  2. Sudan gained independence from Britain in 1956, while South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in 2011.
  3. Sudan has a predominantly Muslim population, while South Sudan has a mix of Christians and traditional beliefs.

Sudan vs South Sudan

The difference between Sudan and South Sudan is that Sudan, or the Republic of Sudan, has been recognized as an independent country for a long time now, whereas South Sudan has been recognized as an independent country recently in 2011 after the independence referendum. They were one nation until 2011. Following years of civil war, the southern part of the country left the union, forming South Sudan, one of the world’s youngest countries. Although it is the tenth anniversary of Southern Sudan’s sovereignty, the war continues to engulf both nations.

Sudan vs South Sudan

The Republic of Sudan, or Sudan, was declared an independent nation due to the riots and disarray of the people living in that part of the country. Sudan is a nation in northwestern Africa.

Sudan is named after the Arabic phrase Bild al-Sdn (“land of the blacks”), which medieval Arab researchers used to describe the established African kingdoms that began at the Sahara’s border fence.

Sudan includes South Sudan, which itself ‘was’ the home to numerous sub-Saharan African ethnic groups for more than a hundred years, first as a colonial possession, then as an independent republic.

Sudan was the biggest Country in Africa before the independence of South Sudan in 2011, with an area that covered approximately 8% of the African continent and over 2% of the world’s land area.

The atmosphere of the country was jubilant after South Sudan gained its independence in 2011. However, today’s residents’ lofty aspirations have been replaced with rioting and acute famine.

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Fighting, along with a crumbling economy, has destroyed the nation for more than 4 years, with terrible consequences: 6.3 million people are starving and jobless without any definite source of income.

That’s 1.3 million more people in danger than when the famine was proclaimed last year. Humanitarian assistance helped to put an end to the drought and famine by the middle of 2017, but the situation worsened across the nation.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonSudanSouth Sudan
Full NameSudan is known as the ‘Republic of Sudan’ under international recognition.South Sudan also known as ‘Southern Sudan’ actually resides to the north-east of africa.
Religional DiversityThe majority religion in South Sudan is Christianity and Islam is a minority there.With 90.7 percent of the population following Islam, and 5.4 percent following Christianity, Sudan is the most religiously diverse country in the world.
InfrastructureThe historical hub of empires, such as the Nubian kingdoms, has always been in the North of Sudan (currently Sudan), with several mosques and pyramids.The infrastructure of South Sudan is severely lacking in comparison to the rest of the globe. Only one paved route links Juba to Ugandan territories, with the remainder being dirt roads and underdeveloped houses and infrastructures. It can very well be called a young country.
Climatic ConditionsThe climate in the northern part ranges from hyper-arid to subtropical wet-and-dry in the extreme southwest.Tropical climatic conditions with wet and dry seasonal roulette.
National LanguageArabic and English are the national languages of the Republic of Sudan.English is the national language of South Sudan.

What is Sudan?

Sudan is located in the northeastern region of Africa and is the region’s biggest country. Sudan’s formal name is the Sudanese Republic and the Republic of Sudan, and its national and cultural name is Jamhuryat as-Sudan.

Libya and Egypt border it on the northeast, Ethiopia border it on the east, South Sudan and Uganda, and DRC border it on the southward, and Chad and the Central African Republic fence it on the southwest. Sudan’s capital city is Khartoum.

There are 17 states in the country. Omdurman is Sudan’s biggest and financially strongest city.

Sudan’s official languages are Arabic and English. Islam is the most popular religion, with nearly 70% of the inhabitants practising it.

The Christian community is also present in the lower and middle of the nation and the capital area, accounting for a total of approximately 5% of the population.

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Sudan has a lengthy and illustrious history. Two civil wars followed by a cold war have afflicted the folks of Sudan and South Sudan dramatically.

Due to religious, socioeconomic, and cultural divisions, the first one lasted 17 years, from 1955 to 1972, while the second one began in 1983 and concluded in 2005.

The Sudanese government had to reach a deal with the southernmost rebels in order to implement a new government process that would be subject to a Hispanic vote.


What is South Sudan?

South Sudan, like Southern Africa, is an African republic that gained independence in 2011. Juba, South Sudan’s largest and most populated city, is the country’s major metropolis.

The DRC territorial boundaries, the Central African Republic, Kenya, Uganda, Somalia, and Sudan all share boundaries with South Sudan. There are 10 states in all.

South Sudan has had seven years to create its own governance process, which is already distinct from Sudan’s administration.

Their government is still in flux, with many responsibilities delegated to the Presidency to maintain peace in this vulnerable country, and those in charge are the same individuals who led the freedom struggle.

The country already has a legislature and the South Sudanese Pound as its monetary currency. The country’s first polls are scheduled for 2021.

South Sudan’s national and official language is English. Christianity and Animism are both embraced in the nation.

The government of South Sudan is not the same as the administration of Sudan.

They battled to be recognized as an autonomous state, and in 2005, they gained what they desired by consenting to stop the civil war. Sudan had to alter its legislation in 2011 due to the establishment of an independence referendum.

south sudan 1

Main Differences Between Sudan and South Sudan

  1. The national language of Sudan is Arabic, whereas the national language of South Sudan is English.
  2. The majority of the population practices Islam in Sudan, whereas Christianity is the majority in South Sudan.
  3. Sudan is much more developed and posh when compared to the newly born South Sudan.
  4. Sudan is known as the Republic of Sudan, whereas South Sudan is referred to as ‘Southern Sudan’.
  5. Sudan is politically as well as culturally more stringent and strict when compared to liberal Southern Sudan. Sudan’s government has been in power since 1989, following a coup led by Omar El-Bashir, the current president.
Difference Between Sudan and South Sudan

Last Updated : 29 August, 2023

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16 thoughts on “Sudan vs South Sudan: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The discussion of the current humanitarian crisis in South Sudan serves as a stark reminder of the challenges faced by the nation, despite its relatively recent independence.

    • The juxtaposition of the jubilation of independence with the subsequent turmoil and famine captures the tragic reality of South Sudan’s state of affairs.

    • Indeed, the portrayal of South Sudan’s struggles underscores the urgent need for global attention and support.

  2. The article effectively offers a comprehensive overview of the geographical and cultural aspects of both Sudan and South Sudan, providing valuable insights.

  3. The article does well to emphasize the sociopolitical climate of Sudan and South Sudan, highlighting the complexities of their respective situations.

  4. This article provides an insightful comparison of the political, religious, infrastructural, and climatic differences between Sudan and South Sudan. Very informative!

  5. The information about South Sudan’s territorial boundaries and its geopolitical relations with neighboring countries is presented with great clarity and depth.

    • The article’s meticulous analysis of South Sudan’s geospatial context is commendable, offering a holistic perspective on its geopolitical landscape.

    • Absolutely, the explicit examination of South Sudan’s regional dynamics adds a layer of nuance to the understanding of its geopolitical positioning.

  6. The delineation of Sudan’s regional boundaries and linguistic diversity enhances the portrayal of its rich historical and cultural tapestry.

  7. I appreciate the detailed explanation about the political differences and vision of Sudan and South Sudan after the independence referendum in 2011.

  8. The historical context provided about Sudan and South Sudan sheds light on their tumultuous past, allowing for a better understanding of their current political landscape.

    • Absolutely, the conflict-ridden history of the two nations is crucial for comprehending their present state of affairs.

    • The comparison table effectively summarizes the key disparities between Sudan and South Sudan, making it easier to grasp the differences.


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