South Financial Group shareholders Tuesday approved the company’s merger with TD Financial Group.

Out of more than 360,000,000 votes entitled to be cast at the special meeting, held in Greenville, 237,235,372, or 66 percent, were cast in favor of the merger, according to information filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Final approval by Canadian authorities is expected soon and the deal should close this week, South Financial officials said. South Financial is the parent company of Carolina First Bank.

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Africa is on the verge of adding another country, its first in nearly two decades. But perhaps not surprisingly, the new state will likely experience significant growing pains.

Next January, the people of Southern Sudan should have an opportunity to vote in a referendum on whether to break away from the Republic of Sudan and create their own country. It is expected that the 8 million or so who live in the region will vote overwhelmingly for independence, according to The Economist

For the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), the vote will represent the culmination of half a century of often-bloody struggle for recognition against successive Islamist regimes in Khartoum. Northern Sudanese governments have often tried to impose an Arab and Muslim culture on the largely black African, Christian and animist south.

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