International guests arrived to Juba, capital of South Sudan, ahead of its independence on July 9th.
Over 3,500 guests including heads of states and government officials from the South’s 10 states and more than 30 African leaders are expected to attend the celebrations.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon were among the first officials to arrive in time for the celebrations.
The U.N. chief was pleased with the improving ties between the north and south, as both sides have been fighting over Abyei region and Southern Kordofan in the past months.
North and South Sudan have been in a civil war for over five decades over disputes of ethnicity, religion, ideology and oil. The violence took over two million lives and left four million others in Kenya refugee camps.
Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General