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Background: Sudan

Independence: January 1, 1956 from Egypt and the United Kingdom);

Adjacent Countries: Central African Republic (southwest), Chad (west), Democratic Republic of Congo (southwest), Egypt (north), Eritrea (east), Ethiopia (east), Kenya (southeast), Libya (northwest), Uganda (south);
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Government: transitional; Capital: Khartoum
Chief of State:
President Lt. Gen. Umar Hasan Ahmad al-BASHIR (since 16 October 1993)
Head of Gov't:
President Lt. Gen. Umar Hasan Ahmad al-BASHIR (since 16 October 1993)

Population (July 2001 est.):
36,080,373

Infant mortality rate (2001 est.):
68.67 deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth (2001 est.):
Total Population: 59.94 years
Male: 55.85 years
Female: 58.08 years

Ethnic groups:
Black - 52%
Arab - 39%
Beja - 6%
foreigners - 2%
other - 1%

Religions:
Sunni Muslim - 70% (in north)
Indigenous beliefs - 25%
Christian - 5% (mostly in south and Khartoum)

Languages:
Arabic (official), Nubian, Ta Bedawie, diverse dialects of Nilotic, Nilo-Hamitic, Sudanic languages, English

Literacy: (definition: age 15 and over can read and write)(1994 est.)
Total Population: 46.1%
Male: 57.7%
Female: 34.6%