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15 december 2010 - Juba, South Sudan - Paulina Awat, 61 years old, sits with her three daughters on the bank of the river Nile in the southern capital Juba, South Sudan. Paulina, her husband and their 5 children spent 13 days on the boat that brought them from Khartoum to Juba. The family spent 25 years living in the North. Over 55.000 southerners have returned to the South to vote in an independence referendum on January 9, 2011. The return has been organized by the autonomous Government of Southern Sudan programs and others haves spontaneously returned to various states across the south. Many Southern Sudanese fled to the north during the second north-south civil war, which began in 1983 and ended with a 2005 peace deal that granted the south the right to secede through a referendum. Photo credit: Benedicte Desrus