Sudan

Huge turnout on second day of voting in referendum

Reuters/Goran Tomasevic

Thousands of south Sudanese have turned out to vote on the second day of the landmark referendum on independence. In a repeat of scenes on Sunday, huge queues formed outside polling stations in the regional capital, Juba, long before dawn. 

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Many people were wearing their best clothes as they cast their vote on whether to break away from the mainly Arab muslim north of the country.

The large turnout on Monday, the second of the seven days of the polling, brings the south a step closer to the 60 per cent turnout needed to validate the referendum. This figure was agreed in a 2005 peace deal between the north and the south.

Some 3.75 million people are registered to vote in the south and around 117,000 in the north with the majority in the capital, Khartoum.

Final results of the poll are not expected until next month because of problems involved in collecting ballot boxes in the vast region which has just 40 kilometres of tarmac road.

 

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