Rebecca Hamilton brings in-depth coverage of the cultural, political, economic and legal challenges that loom as Sudan lurches towards likely partition. Most observers predict that January 2011 will bring about the birth of Africa's newest nation, with the predominantly Christian and animist south of the country expected to vote in favor of breaking from the predominantly Muslim north. The only real question is whether the transition can be managed peacefully.
Hamilton covers this historic period from inside Sudan, asking questions that are vital to understanding the upcoming transition: What will be the situation for southerners who wish to remain in the north of the country? Will oil be a trigger for renewed conflict or will the mutual dependency that arises from the oil fields being in the south but the pipeline for export running through the north be used to positive effect? What will be the situation for the marginalized people of the north if the south breaks away? In a new southern country that will have one of the lowest literacy rates in the world, how will governance be managed? What kind of relationship will China maintain with the north and forge with the south? With the spotlight now on the 2011 referendum, what will happen to the millions of Darfuris who remain displaced in the west of the country? Her reporting from across the country takes place at a time when what happens in Sudan will reverberate throughout the African continent for decades to come.