The world's newest country, South Sudan, has joined ITU to become the Union's 193rd Member State. The country, which gained its independence on 9 July, 2011 has already been allocated the international dialling code +211 by ITU, following the country's recognition by the UN General Assembly. The dialling code became active on 28 September.
"We are delighted to be able to welcome South Sudan as an ITU member state so soon after attaining full nationhood. The government of South Sudan clearly recognises the importance of information and communication technology (ICT) as an engine of social and economic development. We will work alongside the national authorities to leverage the power of technology, to help lift the country to new levels and fulfil the national motto of 'Justice, Liberty, Prosperity'," said ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun Touré.
The accession of South Sudan as an ITU Member State implies its adhesion to the Radio Regulations, the international treaty which governs the use of radiocommunications among the world's nations, giving it full access rights to the frequency spectrum and satellite orbit resources managed by ITU.
A high-level ITU delegation led by Brahima Sanou, Director of ITU's Telecommunication Development Bureau, recently met with government ministers in South Sudan with the aim of acquiring first-hand information on the country's needs and challenges in the area of ICT development. The first such visit by ITU, the mission paves the way for the delivery of focused assistance to the country as it embarks on its development path.