World Facts

What Do the Colors and Symbols of the Flag of Sudan Mean?

The national flag of Sudan was adopted on May 20, 1960.

Sudan, also referred to as North Sudan after the independence of South Sudan, is a sovereign nation situated in Northern Africa. It is Africa’s third-largest nation and borders Egypt, Central African Republic, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Chad, Libya and the Red Sea. The country had an estimated population of approximately 41,529,370 people in 2017, and its capital city is Khartoum. The president is the head of state and the legislative arm of government is made up of two houses, the upper house and lower house. Prior to splitting with South Sudan, Sudan was the most prominent country in Africa. It has an extensive stretch coastline of 853 km, and protected land makes up 2.3% of the country's total area. The name Sudan is an Arabic term meaning "land of the black." The country has two official languages, Arabic and English, and the dominant religion is Islam.

History of the Flag of Sudan

In 1881, during the onset of the Mahdist War, Muhammad Ahmad appointed Abdallahi as a Khalifa and gave him a black flag. The black color of the current national is inspired by this history. During the colonial period, the British Governor General had a rank flag in Sudan. The flag did not feature the coat of arms, but included a disk bearing the words "GOVERNOR GENERAL OF THE SUDAN." Sudan gained independence from Egypt and Britain on January 1, 1956. The new national flag adopted upon independence was a tricolour of horizontal stripes: blue (top), yellow (middle), and green (bottom). The blue color represented the River Nile, yellow symbolized the Sahara desert, while green signified agriculture. The flag was used from 1956 until 1970.

Meaning of the Flag's Colors and Symbols

The current national flag of Sudan was adopted on May 20, 1960. It is a red, white and black horizontal tricolor, with a green triangle at the hoist side of the flag, and was designed by Abd al-Rahman. The three stripes area ranged in the following order: red (top), white (middle), and black (bottom). The red color stands for the country's struggle for independence, white represents peace, love, and brightness, black symbolizes the citizens of Sudan, while green represents the Islamic religion, agriculture and prosperity. Taken together, the flag of Sudan symbolizes the unity of the nation. In addition to the national flag, Sudan has a coat of arms, which is composed of a secretary bird whose head is tilted to the right. The national motto, which is written in Arabic at the top of the coat of arms, translates to "Victory is ours," while "Republic of Sudan" is written at the bottom.

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