Flag of Sudan

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Flag of Sudan.svg
UseNational flag, civil and state ensign
Adopted20 May 1970
DesignA horizontal tricolour of red, white, and black; with a green triangle based at the hoist.
Naval Ensign of Sudan.svg
Variant flag of Sudan
UseNaval ensign

The current flag of Sudan (Arabic: علم السودان‎) was adopted on 20 May 1970 and consists of a horizontal red-white-black tricolour with a green triangle at the hoist. The flag is based on the Arab Liberation Flag shared by Egypt, Iraq, Syria and Yemen that uses a subset of the Pan-Arab colours in which green is less significant. Prior to the 1969 military coup of Gaafar Nimeiry, a blue-yellow-green tricolour design was used.

According to World Flags 101:

Red, white, black and green are called the pan-Arab colours and have been historically linked to the Arab people and Islamic religion for centuries. The colours stand for Arab unity and independence. The red stripe represents Sudan's struggle for independence and many other struggles, and the sacrifices of the country's martyrs. The white represents the people, light and optimism. It also represents the White Flag League which was a nationalist group that rose up against colonial rule in 1924. The black represents Sudan; in Arabic 'Sudan' means black. It also represents the black flag of nationalists who fought colonial rule during the Mahdist Revolution, late in 19th century. Green represents Islam, agriculture and the prosperity of the land.[1]

Historical flags[edit]

Mahdist Revolt[edit]

Banner used by the Mahdist Army; captured at Omdurman in 1898.

In 1881, at the beginning of the Mahdist War, the Mahdi Muhammad Ahmad appointed Abdallahi ibn Muhammad as one of his four caliphs (Khalifa) and handed him a black flag.[2] Abdallahi used his black flag to recruit Baggara Arabs and other tribes from the west. The other caliphs used differently coloured flags.[3] The black horizontal stripe in the current Sudanese flag is a reference to this Mahdist-era black flag.[4]

Anglo-Egyptian Sudan[edit]

Between 1899 and 1956, Anglo-Egyptian Sudan was administered jointly as a condominium by Egypt and the United Kingdom. The condominium did not have its own flag; instead the flag of Egypt and the flag of the United Kingdom were always flown together, with the British flag taking precedence.[5]

A flag did exist as a rank flag for the British Governor General of the Sudan. In common with the rank flags of governors and commissioners of other British overseas territories, it consisted of a Union Flag defaced with a white disk bearing the territory's badge or coat of arms, surrounded by a wreath of laurel. As no badge or coat of arms existed for Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, the disk instead contained the words "GOVERNOR GENERAL OF THE SUDAN".

1956–1970 flag[edit]

Upon independence from Egypt and the United Kingdom on 1 January 1956, Sudan adopted a blue-yellow-green tricolour as its national flag. This flag remained in use until 1970, when the current flag was adopted.[6] The colours of the flag represented the River Nile (blue), the Sahara (yellow) and farmlands (green). They were chosen as they were neutral between ethnic groups and political parties.[7]

Use of this flag resurfaced during the 2018–19 Sudanese protests.[8][9][10][11][12]


Current flags[edit]

Historical flags[edit]

Provincial flags[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ World Flags 101. "Sudan Flag - World Flags 101". WorldFlags101.com. Moxy Media. Retrieved 9 August 2008.
  2. ^ Hill, Richard Leslie (1967) [First published 1951]. A Biographical Dictionary of the Sudan (2nd ed.). Routledge. p. 6. ISBN 978-0-7146-1037-5.
  3. ^ Featherstone, Donald F. (1993). Khartoum 1885: General Gordon's Last Stand. Osprey military campaign series, v. 23. Osprey Publishing. p. 18. ISBN 978-1-85532-301-8.
  4. ^ Fadlalla, Mohamed Hassan (2005). The Problem of Dar Fur. iUniverse. p. 33. ISBN 978-0-595-36502-9.
  5. ^ "Sudan - Historical flags". Flagspot.net. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  6. ^ "Sudan - Historical flags". Flagspot.net. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  7. ^ "sudan rb". www.rbvex.it. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  8. ^ "Why is the First and Former Flag of Sudan Resurfacing on Social Media?". 500 Words Magazine. 27 December 2018. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  9. ^ Hashim, Mohanad (5 May 2019). "The art fuelling Sudan's revolution". Retrieved 13 June 2019 – via www.bbc.com.
  10. ^ "Flying the flag for Sudan – what flag is that?". Radio Dabanga. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  11. ^ "Breakthrough agreement between Sudan protest leaders, military". Prothom Alo. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  12. ^ Amir Ahmed, Mohammed Tawfeeq and Tamara Qiblawi. "Sudan celebrates end of stand-off between military leaders and opposition". CNN. Retrieved 1 August 2019.

External links[edit]