Modern states /
Arabic: 'al-jumhūriyyatu s-sūdāniyya
Independent Islamic republic in Africa with 40 million inhabitants (2005 estimate), and an area of 2,505,000 kmē. Its capital is Khartoum, which is also the largest city in the country.
Sudan is administratively divided into 26 states, called wilaya. Southern Sudan has a status yet to be defined with Khartoum, and may possibly form an independent state. In the northeast the border to Egypt remains disputed.
Head of state is President Omar Hassan al-Bashir. 1st Vice President is Salva Kiir Mayardit, 2nd Vice President is Ali Osman Taha. Sudan has since 1993 no longer the institution of prime minister.
Parliamentary fuctions are divided between the Council of States and
Sudan has a large number of ethnic groups, with numerous languages. There are also many different religions among the peoples, where Islam dominates in the north, Christianity in the south and traditional religions in small communities.
Sudan is one of the few countries that is underpopulated, yet most people living here are poor. The sad conditions of the Economy is almost exclusively the result of the incompetent politics of the leaders of the country through the recent decades. In recent years, attempts of implementing an Islamist regime has ruined what already was weak in the society.
Sudan scores poorly on the Human Development Index where it comes in as no. 150 of the 182 states that are ranked in the world, and 21 of 22 MENA countries. On a scale with 1.000 as maximum, Sudan gains 0.531 points.
The currency of Sudan is pound (SDG) is not convertible, and within its present regime it has been a stable currency compared with Western currencies.
Sudan's economy is weak from international isolation, civil wars and a large part of the population living within traditional societies and economies. With a GDP per capita at US$2,200 (2008 estimate), the country is 79% below world average. Unemployment at is 19% and 40% of the population live below the poverty line.
Sudan only has proper health services in cities, and life expectancy is more than 30 years shorter than in Israel.
Sudan scores poorly on general basic education, but much effort has been put into building a good system for higher education, and the country has at least one internationally accredited university.
Being such a vast country, Sudan encompasses several unique peoples. The country generally counts 19 ethnic groups with 597 subgroups.
Language follows ethnicity, but the main language is Arabic, with English as the main language used between different peoples.
Islam dominates in the north, traditional religion and Christianity in the middle and south.
The Sudanese fertility rate is very high, but population growth more modest due to short life expectancy and high mortality.
Sudan was a major part of Ancient Egyptian history, and for 1000 years pyramids were built along the Sudanese part of the Nile. Sudan in the recent decades has been a troubled country, with civil wars at several fronts.