WORLDPOST
07/08/2011 12:23 pm ET | Updated Sep 07, 2011

South Sudan Begins Countdown To Independence (PHOTOS)

JUBA, Sudan (AP)--When Southern Sudan becomes the world's newest country on Saturday, its people will rejoice in the streets as it enters statehood as one of the poorest and least developed places on earth.

But advocates and diplomats warned Friday that when the celebrations subside and the dignitaries leave, unresolved problems between the south and the northern government, could spark renewed conflict along their new international border.

The internationally-brokered 2005 peace deal that ended more than two decades of north-south war expires Saturday.

South Sudan becomes its own nation at midnight. The U.N. recognizes 192 countries; South Sudan will be 193.

Sudan, the country South Sudan is breaking away from, will recognize the new country as soon as Friday turns to Saturday.

Take a look at some facts on how Southern Sudan will transition to being the world's newest country, courtesy of Reuters:

Sudan Independence Day