- By Martti Laine, OH2BH
With great anticipation, DXers the world over are looking forward to the 9th of July this year as the predicted day of South Sudan’s declaration of independence. Indeed, that declaration is set to happen, but it will not yet guarantee the birth of a new DXCC entity, at least at that time.
The DXCC rules are written in such a way that only a new country’s membership in the United Nations and/or its ITU country prefix will result in the anticipated DXCC counter. The U.S. State Department Geographer’s list of Dependencies and Areas of Special Sovereignty obviously does not apply in this case.
The opinion from the ARRL is that no exceptions will be made in this case. They state that the event date – i.e. declaration of independence – will not cause potential QSOs to be counted retroactively. Rather, Newington categorically assumes that U.N. membership, which will most likely come first, followed by the release of an ITU prefix by the U.N. telecommunications agency, will lead to country status.
The prospect of a new country has taken an unexpected turn just recently. The country’s borderline has never been settled between North and South Sudan in the area (Abyei) where most of the oil reserves are located. It was agreed under the 2005 Peace Agreement that the border issue will be resolved by the people in that province. A referendum to settle the matter has not happened. Instead, the North (ST2) has entered the disputed province with force. Additionally, the North has stated that they will not support an independent State in the south unless the contested region is theirs. The matter now remains totally in limbo. LINK.
While the amateur radio project announced earlier this year by 5Z4DZ, ST2AR, W3UR and OH2BH is well underway, it is not yet reasonable to swing your antennas toward South Sudan, as we speak. The project has two well-known DXers now permanently based in South Sudan: SM7PKK and YI1DZ/ST2DZ. The knowledge and the professional presence are in place to proceed with an immediate activation as soon as the above country status matters are resolved.
More news to follow.