The House Foreign Affairs Committee held a briefing on the referendum on independence for South Sudan. The special adviser for Sudan at the State Department, Princeton Lyman spoke along with Richard S. Williamson, Former Special Envoy to Sudan and Ambassador to the U.N. Commission on Human Rights
The referendum was held in the region from January 9th to January 15th with support expected for the secession. In the event of the referendum supporting separation, Southern Sudan would become an independent nation in July.
Currently south Sudan is considered an autonomous region within Africa's largest nation, Sudan.