Sudan's president met with former southern rebels on Tuesday for the first time since they withdrew their ministers from the government.
Northern and southern officials say they want to avoid war, but both sides are preparing for it. Egypt has announced that it plans to send some of its top ministers to mediate between the north and south.
Gwen Thompkins says Sudan's unity government was established after a bloody civil war that lasted 20 years and left two million people dead. The government was supposed to be shared by the north and south, with northern soldiers pulling out of the south and greater sharing of oil revenues. Very little of this has happened since the sides signed the peace agreement two years ago.
Southern leaders say they will not return to the government until northern leaders agree to allow them to have more of a say in the decision making, says Thompkins.
If another civil war breaks out, the conflict could be just as deadly as the last one.
Thompkins joins Madeleine Brand from Nairobi, Kenya, to talk about the faltering peace deal and what it means for the separate conflict in western Darfur.
Gwen Thompkins joins Madeleine Brand from Nairobi, Kenya, to talk about the faltering peace deal and what it means for the separate conflict in western Darfur.