General information about Sudan
The official name is The Republic of the Sudan.
Located in northeast Africa. The area is 2506 thousand km2, the population is 35.1 million people. (2002). The official language is Arabic. The capital is Khartoum (3 million people, 2002). National holiday – Independence Day on January 1 (since 1956). The National Salvation Revolution Day, June 30 (since 1989), is also celebrated as a public holiday. The monetary unit is the Sudanese dinar (equal to 10 pounds or 100 piastres).
Member of the UN (since 1956), AU (since 1963), Arab League (since 1956).
Geography of Sudan
Sudan is located between 15°36’N and 32°33’E. Washed by the waters of the Red Sea. The length of the coastline is 853 km. The coast is a narrow strip of coastal lowland, to which mountains adjoin. It borders Egypt to the north, Eritrea and Ethiopia to the east, Kenya, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the south, and the Central African Republic, Chad and Libya to the west.
Sudan is divided into three physical and geographical regions: desert in the north, most of which is occupied by the sandy Libyan and sandy-stony Nubian deserts (about 30% of the territory); a vast semi-arid region of steppes and low mountains in the centre; vast marshes and jungles in the south of the country. In the west – the Darfur and Kordofan plateaus with separate mountains and massifs (Mount Marra in Darfur – 3088 m). In the east – the spurs of the Ethiopian highlands (Habesh). In the northeast are the Red Sea Mountains. The highest point in Sudan is Mount Kineti (3187 m), located in the south near the border with Uganda.
The bowels of Sudan contain reserves of oil, natural gas, iron ore, copper, tin, zinc, molybdenum, tungsten, chromium, manganese, gold, silver, uranium, marble, asbestos, graphite, gypsum.
In the north and in a number of areas in the west, the soil cover is poorly developed. In the south, red ferralitic and alferritic soils of tall grass savannahs predominate; to the north, red-brown soils of desert savannahs. In the interfluve of the Blue and White Nile (Gezira region) there are heavy dark-colored soils. There are also fused tropical hydromorphic and alluvial soils. The northern half of Sudan lies in a semi-desert and desert zone, almost devoid of vegetation. The southern half of the country is mostly savanna, tall grass. Among the plants, in addition to herbs, are the baobab, numerous acacias, among which are species that produce gum arabic. There are also tropical forests in the south. In some southern and mountainous areas in tropical forests, two types of coffee tree are found, tree-like spurge, heglic soap tree, etc.
According to bridgat, in the northern part, the climate is tropical desert. Average monthly temperatures from +30-35°С to +15-20°С. In summer, the thermometer rises to +43°C. There is very little precipitation – less than 200 mm. In the south, the climate is tropical equatorial monsoons. The average monthly temperature is +23-30°С. The annual amount of precipitation falling in the summer months is 500-1400 mm. In the central part of Sudan, the climate has a transitional character. On the eve of the rainy season – the highest temperatures and often dust storms (habub).
The only river system in Sudan is the Nile, which crosses the country from south to north. The Nile is formed from the confluence of two tributaries – the White and Blue Nile in the Khartoum region. The Blue Nile flows out of Lake Tana in Ethiopia. Its length in Sudan is 800 km. The White Nile originates in Tanzania. On the territory of Sudan from the border with Uganda to the city of Malakal, where the Al-Ghazal tributary flows into it, it is called Bahr al-Jebel (sea of mountains). This is due to the fact that with access to the plain in the south, the White Nile enters the swamp area, and during the summer rainy season, the flood increases the area occupied by water to 60 thousand km2. A tributary of the Atbara flows into the Nile 320 km to the north.
Groundwater is not very deep. Their presence is very important for the economy and life of the population in a hot climate.
Many animals are found in the southern tropical regions of Sudan. There are elephants, crocodiles, hippos, giraffes, leopards, lions, various monkeys, poisonous snakes, several species of tropical birds.
Population of Sudan
Sudan is characterized by high population growth, both for the northern and southern provinces – 2.6-3.2% per year. Over the past 40 years, the population has almost tripled, and the urban population by 7.5 times. Birth rate 38.6%, mortality 10.2%. The average life expectancy for men is 56 years, for women 58 years (2001).
The ratio of men and women in the entire population is 0.99. Urban population 31% (1999). Population density 14 people. per 1 km2 (2002).
According to the ethnic composition, more than 1/2 of the country’s population are Arabs, 30% are Negroid tribes inhabiting the southern regions of the country, 6% are Beja tribes, 6% are Nuba tribes. In total, there are more than 570 tribes in Sudan.
Arabic is the predominant language in the northern part of the country, and is also spoken by the Nubians, who have their own language. South Sudanese tribes speak more than 100 independent languages. St. 70% of the population are Sunni Muslims, less than 30% (inhabitants of the south) are Christians and animists.