Abyei votes to join South Sudan

Dinka Ngok women celebrating after the referendum result announcement

Despite the decision being rejected by Juba Abyei residents voted to join South Sudan their in a referendum, organized by the leaders of nine chiefdoms of the Ngok Dinka community.The Ngok Dinka are a prominent ethnic group in the oil rich Abyei region which lies between Sudan and South Sudan.

The hope still remains that the international community will put pressure on Sudan and South Sudan to accept the outcome of the referendum. There have however been concerns from the African Union that the vote would inflame tensions and UN troops patrolled the streets of Abyei throughout the morning.

Thousands of Ngok Dinka came from across Africa and beyond to participate in the voting, that they believe will change their lives by giving them nationality. People celebrated the the event with dancing and music but it remains to be seen whether there will be any practical change as a consequence of this event.