While independence seems to be the foregone outcome of the January referendum on Southern Sudan’s self-determination, the real question is whether the country’s separation will be violent or pacific in nature. The level of trust between the parties stands at its lowest level since 2005, and while the NCP has embarked on a dangerous policy of brinkmanship, the SPLM/A fears that the Comprehensive Peace Agreement could become the latest in a long list of dishonoured agreements. In the event of renewed conflict, Abyei and other border areas are likely to be the flashpoint for confrontation between the Northern and Southern armies. Nevertheless, the parties seem to be aware of the dangers posed by the resumption of war, and in recent years they have learnt to solve their controversies using political rather than military means. The relation of interdependence that is in existence between Northern and Southern Sudan could create the convergence of interests which is necessary to shape a common vision for post-referendum relations between the two states.