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AU formally admits South Sudan as 54th member state

(Xinhua)

09:42, August 16, 2011

ADDIS ABABA, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- The African Union (AU) on Monday formally admitted South Sudan as the 54th member state at a ceremony held on the premises the African Union Commission (AUC) Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

During the ceremony attended by Jean Ping, AU Commission Chairperson, Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of South Sudan, Deng Alor Kuol, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Sudan, members of the Diplomatic Corps, and other dignitaries, the flag of South Sudan was raised to wave along with the other states' flags at the AU headquarters.

"We note with satisfaction that the birth of the new nation was as a result of a peaceful referendum carefully midwifed by two great African Statesmen, Salva Kiir and Oumar Hassen El Bashir," said Jean Ping while declaring the official admission of the South Sudan as the 54th member state of the Union.

President Kiir said on the occasion, "As our flag has now been raised high both in New York at the UN and today in the capital of the African Union."

According to AU, the AUC received on July 26 2011, the requisite number of Member States affirmation consenting to the admission of South Sudan to the African Union; this is in conformity with the provisions of Article 29 of the Constitutive Act relating to AU membership, says the AU.

South Sudan became an independent state after the referendum on July 9 2011. The referendum was included in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) signed in 2005 by between the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) and the Government of Sudan. The provisions of the CPA involved amongst other the sharing of oil revenues and the right to self-determination for the people of South Sudan.

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