It hasn’t been an easy first 12 months, but citizens of South Sudan took to the streets Monday to celebrate their first year of independence.
Despite dire warnings about the fledgling nation’s stability and economic viability, South Sudanese danced and sang throughout the capital of Juba, amid the honking of car horns, according to Agence France-Presse.
Yet, the world’s newest county has had anything but an easy go of it since separating from Sudan.
South Sudan has spent the past year wracked by border wars with Sudan, as well as internal violence and the shutdown of its vital oil production in a bitter dispute with Khartoum, according to the wire service.
The lack of schools, health facilities, roads and jobs is a direct result of years of conflict and underdevelopment, added The Guardian.
“The absence of opportunities for young people, combined with the ready availability of guns, another damaging legacy of the war years, has fueled a series of deadly inter-ethnic clashes,” the British publication wrote.
Strife is nothing new for South Sudan. The region spent much period from when Sudan achieved independence in 1956 until 2005 fighting Khartoum.