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The Khartoum Diaries

By Dayna Midler Subscribe to RSS | November 26th 2011 | Views:
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The Capital of Sudan, the oil rich city Khartoum has a turbulent history.Khartoum is the capital and largest city of Sudan. It is located at the point where White Nile and Blue Nile meet. The location where they meet is called al-Morgan. Khartoum is the word derived taken from Arabic origin and means end of an elephant’s trunk. The word probably refers to the strip of land between the two Niles.The city was founded by Ibrahim Pasha in 1821, son of Egyptian ruler Mohammed Ali Pasha who took Sudan under his realm. It originally served as a post of Egyptian army but soon the settlement grew rapidly into a trade centre specially for trading of slaves.The city was defended heavily from British invaders leading to a massacre of Anglo-Egyptian garrison.

The city is a center of organizations and conferences like the Organization of African Unity, African Union and Arab League The city was made capital of Sudan afterwards. The recent developments in the city include the completion of oil pipeline between Khartoum and Port Sudan. The city became a destination of refugees from surrounding countries especially from Chad, Ethiopia and Uganda. Osama Bin Laden, the chief of A-Qaeda was housed in the posh location of the city until he was banished from the country officially.After the US embassy bombings in 1998,Osama Bin Laden was accused of the bomb plot and the al-Shifa Pharmaceutical factory was bombed by US missiles which raised the diplomatic tensions between US and Sudan to an edge. After the sudden death of Vice President in 2005, the city was captured in a wave of riots which broke out for almost three days and killed 24 people before warned by the Southern politicians.

In 2008, Darfur rebel group came in the city and engaged in fights with Sudanese army. Their aim was to topple the government but Sudanese army succeeded in breaking the assault.Khartoum experiences a hot desert climate.It is the hottest city in the world with a very less rainfall. The average annual temperature is 37C and none of the temperature falls below 30C throughout the year. Although temperature cool to a certain extent during nights like in a typical desert region.After the historical peace agreement between the liberation movement and government,the city has moved rapidly towards the path of development. New airport, five star hotels, city development and infrastructure are being built at top speed. The economy of the city is concentrated on its oil wealth. Among other industries include printing, textiles, food manufacturing and glass production.

Petroleum products are also produced in the city which has increased the jobs and fuel production in the city. New telecommunication facilities are also under developed throughout the city.The best and famous educational institutes of the country are located in Khartoum. A large number of primary, secondary, private and international schools are located in the city. Famous universities like Al-Neelain University, Al Zaiem Alazhari University, International University of Africa, Nile Valley University, Open University of Sudan, Public Health Institute and Khartoum University attract students from all parts of the country.

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