Africa; key historical events


For events in North Africa, e.g. Libya, Algeria, relating to the Islamic World and Arab Spring see also Islam & Middle East


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See also South Africa


Colour key:



Algeria – see Appendix 1 below

Angola – see Appendix 2 below

Benin (Dahomey) – see Appendix 3 below

Botswana – see Appendix 4 below

Cameroon  -see Appendix 5 below

Cape Verde – see Appendix 6 below

Chad – see Appendix 7 below

Central African Republic – see Appendix 8 below

Congo, Democratic Republic – see Appendix 9 below

Cote D’Ivoire – see Appendix 10 below

(Gambia) – see Senegal

Ghana – see Appendix 11 below

Kenya – see Appendix 12 below

Liberia – see Appendix 13 below

Libya – see Appendix 14 below

Madagascar – see Appendix 15 below

Malawi – see Appendix 16 below

Mali – see Appendix 17 below

Morocco – see Appendix 18 below

Mozambique – see Appendix 19 below

Namibia – see Appendix 20 below

Niger – see Appendix 21 below

Nigeria, Nigeria-Biafra  see Appendix 22 below

Rwanda – see Appendix 23 below

Senegal & Gambia – see Appendix 24 below

Seychelles – see Appendix 25 below

Sierra Leone – see Appendix 26 below

Somalia – see Appendix 27 below

Sudan & South Sudan  - see Appendix 28 below

Tanzania – see Appendix 29 below

Tunisia – see Appendix 30 below

Uganda – see Appendix 31 below

Western Sahara – see Appendix 32 below

Zambia – see Appendix 33 below

Zimbabwe (Rhodesia) – see Appendix 34 below


See also Internatiional Unions for pan-African organisations

For 2014 Ebola crisis see Medical


Africa - General

2004, Simon Mann and 66 other mercenaries were arrested (in Zimbabwe) en-route to Equatorial Guinea to overthrow the President, Teodoro Obiang. Mann was extradited to equatorial Guinea in 2008 where he was enstenced to 34 years; however he was released in 2009 after his family paid £250,000.

1996, Oil was discovered in waters off Equatorial Guinea.

11/4/1996, A treaty establishing Africa as a nuclear-free zone was signed in Cairo.

30/4/1991, In Lesotho, Major-General Justin Lekhanya, military leader, was deposed by Colonel Elias Ramaema.

3/9/1987, Coup in Burundi. The Military Committee for National Redemption was founded.

13/7/1985, Live Aid pop concerts in Britain and America raised over £50 million for famine victims in Africa. Bob Geldof performed at Wembley.

3/8/1984, The Republic of Upper Volta changed its name to Burkina Faso.

1983, Thomas Sankara became President of Upper Volta. He abjured luxury and was proud to be totally against all corruption. He was assassinated in 1987.

2/6/1977, Djibouti became independent, after over 100 years of French rule.

23/4/1976, Henry Kissinger began a tour of Africa. He stated that his top priority was an end to the maverick status of Southern Rhodesia. He promised Mozambique aid because of the trade losses it had suffered in closing its border with Rhodesia.

12/7/1975, Sao Tome and Principe declared independence from Portugal.

6/7/1975, The Comoros declared their independence from France.

28/2/1975. The Lome Convention was signed in Lome, capital of Togo, between the EC and 46 developing nations.  The agreement provided for free access for the export of these 46 countries into the EC, also for aid and investment.  It laid the foundation for the post imperialistic (colonial) relations between Europe and Africa.

10/9/1974, Guinea Bissau became independent.

1/10/1972, The archaeologist and anthropologist David Leakey died. He had worked on human fossils in Africa to trace the history of mankind.

12/10/1968. Equatorial Guinea became independent.

6/9/1968. Swaziland became independent from Britain.

19/3/1967, French Somaliland (now Djibouti) rejected independence in a  referendum.

4/10/1966. Lesotho became independent. It had been formerly known as Basutoland, and had been a British Protectorate since 1868.

28/11/1960, Mauritania became fully independent from France.

17/8/1960, Gabon became an independent nation, from France.

15/8/1960. The Congo (Brazzaville) became independent from France.

5/8/1960, Upper Volta (Burkina Faso) became independent.

27/4/1960. Togo became independent. 

6/1/1959, More rioting in the Belgian Congo; the root cause was poverty and unemployment. Belgium agreed to make reforms.

2/10/1958, Guinea was proclaimed an independent republic.

10/11/1952, 77-year-old doctor and philosopher Albert Schweitzer was awarded the Nobel Prize for his humanitarian work in Africa.

30/1/1944, The Brazzaville Conference; French colonial governors met in Brazzaville, capital  of French Equatorial Africa, to set out post-war relations between France and her African colonies. Further intergration between France and the colonies was anticipated, rather than eventual independence.

2/5/1938, King Moshoeshoe II of Lesotho was born.

30/12/1935, Omar Bongo, President of Gabon, was born.

15/3/1921. Belgium ceded Rwanda to Britain.

10/5/1904, Sir Henry Morton Stanley, British explorer in Africa and journalist, died in London.

27/9/1902, A British Crown ordinance authorised White settlement of the east African uplands.

17/7/1898. The Frenchman Captain J Marchand reached Fashoda (now Kodok) in the Nile Valley in an attempt to build a continuous belt of French colonial territory from west to east across Africa. However the British similarly wanted a contiguous territory from north to south. Lord Kitchener, advancing south from Egypt to fight the Mahdi from Sudan, conquered the Sudanese on 2/9/1898 and then learned of ‘white men flying a strange flag at Fashoda’. The British reached Fashoda on 19/9/1898, under General Kitchener. War between France and Britain seemed imminent, neither side being willing to give way until Lord Salisbury was able to announce on 4/11/1898 that the French would back down. On 21/3/1899 a declaration was made that united all French territories in north, west, and central Africa into one unit whilst giving Fashoda to the British.

1894, Britain and France disputed the frontier between the French colony of Dahomey (now Togo) and the British colony of Nigeria. The British had previously signed a treaty with the Chief of the Bussa, who occupied Borgu region, but the French claimed that the Bussa were subordinate to the Chief of Nikki region. Britain and France raced to sign a treaty with Nikki, a race which Britain won by 5 days.

12/5/1894, The Congo Treaty, between Britain and Belgium, gave Britain a lease on a corridor between Lakes Tangynika and Albert.

12/12/1893. The French advanced down the valley of the Niger from Kayes in Senegal and captured Timbuktu, capital of Mali.

31/7/1891. Britain claimed African territory north of the Zambezi, up to the Congo basin, to be in its sphere of influence.

26/5/1887. The Imperial British East Africa Company received a charter to colonise Kenya and Uganda.

26/2/1885, A meeting of 15 nations in Berlin hosted by Bismark divided up east and central Africa amongst European countries.

1884, The German explorer, Dr Karl Peters, formed the Deutsche Kolonialverein, a society to promote German colonisation of Africa.

5/7/1884, The German Consulate at Tunis formally proclaimed that Togo was a German protectorate.

1877, Henry Stanley explored the course of the River Zaire.

18/4/1874, David Livingstone’s remains were interred in Westminster Abbey. He died in Africa on 1/5/1873.

30/4/1873. The Scottish missionary and explorer David Livingstone died of malaria near Lake Bangweulu in Zambia, aged 60. He was found dead at Chitambo, kneeling in prayer by his bed. He had worked from age 10 to 24 in a cotton factory, and when aged 27 was ordained under the London Missionary Society. He discovered Victoria Falls when aged 41 and Lake Nyasa aged 46. He was buried on 18/4/1874 in Westminster Abbey.

10/11/1871. Historic meeting of explorer and missionary David Livingstone (born 19/3/1813, in Blantyre, Lanarkshire) with Sir Henry Morton Stanley at Ujiji (now in Tanzania). Livingstone died on 1/5/1873.

18/9/1864, English explorer John Hanning Speke died after a shooting accident aged 37.

15/9/1864, John Speke, English explorer in Africa who discovered Lake Victoria, accidentally shot himself whilst partridge shooting.

14/3/1864, Lake Albert in Africa was discovered and named by Sir Samuel Baker.

23/2/1863, British explorers John Speke and J A Grant announced they have discovered Lake Victoria to be the source of the Nile.

16/9/1859, Lake Nyasa was discovered by David Livingstone.

3/8/1858, John Speke, 31, English explorer, discovered Lake Victoria, source of the Nile.

17/11/1855. The Scottish explorer David Livingstone discovered, on the River Zambezi, a large waterfall. He called it the Victoria Falls.

5/7/1853, The colonial administrator Cecil Rhodes was born at Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire, the 7th of 11 children..  His father was a vicar.

4/5/1827, John Manning Speke, English explorer who was the first European to see Lake Victoria, and later identified as the source of the Nile, was born.

19/3/1813, The explorer and missionary David Livingstone, first White man to see the Victoria Falls, was born at 9 Shuttle Row, Blantyre, East Kilbride, Scotland.

21/6/1796. The Scottish explorer Mungo Park reached the River Niger.

22/5/1795, The Scottish explorer Mungo Park set sail on his first voyage to Africa,

10/9/1771. Birth of the surgeon and west African explorer Mungo Park, at Foulshiels near Selkirk. He charted the course of the River Niger.

14/11/1770, The British explorer James Bruce discovered the source of the Blue Nile, at Lake Tana.

1598, Dutch Admiral Wijbrand von Warwijk discovered Mauritius.

13/3/1591, At the Battle of Tondibi, Moroccan forces under the Saadi Dynasty, led by Judar Pasha, defeated the Songhai Empire, despite being outnumbered at least 5 to 1.

4/8/1578, Sebastian, King of Portugal, was killed in the Battle of Al Kasr al Kebir.

1570, Kanem-Bornu became a major power in the region.

9/2/1513, The Portuguese explorer Pedro Mascarenhas discovered the island of Reunion. (near Madagascar)

14/4/1498, Vasco da Gama arrived at the trading city of Malindi, east Africa, after putting in at Kilwa and Monbasa.

1485, The Portuguese established a provisioning station for ships at Sao Tome. Slaves to work the Sao Tome plantations were imported from Guinea.

1473, Portuguese  ships first reached the Congo River.

1473, Portuguese  ships first crossed the Equator.

1455, The Portuguese discovered the Gambia River.

1415, Prince Henry the Navigator led a Portuguese expedition to capture the port of Ceuta from the Moors. On finding treasure from Senegal, which had been brought by caravan across the Sahara, he decided to try and reach Senegal by sea. However his sailors feared sailing too far south, in case they fell off the edge of the (flat) earth, and they also believed the hot sun would scorch  them black, like the Africans.

980, In east Africa, the Zanj Empire was founded by Ali ibn Hasan, succeeding the Kilwa Empire.

450 BCE, Earliest evidence of metallurgy in Sub-Saharan Africa. Iron was smelted by the Nok Culture in furnaces at Taruga.

3000 BCE, The Sahara began to turn from grassland into desert.


Appendix 1 – Algeria, see also Islam

9/12/1993. Foreigners began leaving Algeria after death threats by Islamic militants.

7/2/1993. Algeria announced that the state of emergency imposed a year ago because of Islamic fundamentalism would continue indefinitely.

14/12/1992. In Algeria, Muslim extremists ambushed and killed five policemen.

2/7/1992, Ali Kafi became the new President of Algeria.

29/6/1992, The 73 year old President of Algeria, Mohammed Boudiaf, was assassinated whilst making a speech at a political rally.

4/3/1992, The Supreme Court of Algeria declared the Islamic Salvation Front illegal. It was poised to win control of the Parliament of Algeria in runoff elections.

4/7/1979, Algerian leader ben Bella was released after 14 years in jail.

29/7/1965, The governments of Algeria and France signed an agreement which allowed French petroleum companies to retain their concessions for the right to drill for oil in Algeria, but required also that they cooperate with Algeria's government-owned oil and gas consortium.

20/6/1965, Police in Algiers broke up demonstrations by people who had taken to the streets chanting slogans in support of deposed President Ben Bella.

19/6/1965, The President of Algeria, Ben Bella, (born 1918) was overthrown in a military coup by his Minister of Defence, Colonel Houari Boumedienne. Ben Bella  was imprisoned, and released in 1979.

8/9/1963, A new Constitution in Algeria established Ben Bella  as President.

26/9/1962, Ahmed ben Bella was elected Prime Minister of Algeria.

22/8/1962, President De Gaulle of France escaped an assassination attempt by the OAS, a terrorist organisation of White Algerian settlers opposed to De Gaulle’s policies there.

3/7/1962. France recognised Algerian independence, after a referendum; this also entailed the departure of Algeria from the EU.  Algeria had been under French rule for 132 years. French property was taken over by Algerians.  Ben Hella was the first Prime Minister of Algeria.  De Gaulle had begun peace talks with the FLN on 30/3/1961 and peace was concluded mostly on the FLN’s terms on 18/3/1962.

1/7/1962. Referendum on independence in Algeria. The result was decisive; 5,993,754 voted for independence, and 16,748 opposed it. Most Europeans opposed to independence did not vote. Initially both Muslim Algerians and Europeans celebrated, but within a few days there was violence between fundamentalist Muslims and resentful Europeans in Oran.

26/3/1962. The French Army launched an offensive to crush an armed uprising in Algeria. See 3/7/1962.

8/1/1961, France held a national referendum on whether Algeria should be granted independence. The result was in favour of independence.

24/1/1960. Revolt against French rule broke out in Algeria, after General de Gaulle dismissed the pieds noir hero General Massau. French settlers felt they lacked protection against FLN terrorists and those who had supported De Gaulle 2 years earlier now demonstrated against him. De Gaulle ordered in paratroops who debated whether to open fire on fellow Frenchmen. The order was never given and by February 1960 the revolt had collapsed and many insurgents arrested.

13/12/1959. The UN decided not to intervene in Algeria.

16/9/1959, Charles de Gaulle, French President, offered Algeria a referendum on independence.

4/6/1958, To the dismay of those who wanted the FLN crushed, Charles de Gaulle appeared to offer the prospect of reconciliation in Algeria.

2/6/1958, French President Charles de Gaulle was granted emergency powers for three months in respect to the Algeria crisis.

13/5/1958. Rioting by French settlers in Algeria led to the French army seizing power.

31/12/1955, In response to mounting violence in Algeria, France had increased the number of its troops stationed there from 76,000 at the beginning of 1955 to 170,000 by the end of 1955.

20/8/1955, Algerian independence fighters (FLN, Front Liberation National) committed atrocities against Europeans in the Constantine area of Algeria. Simultaneous attacks in 25 towns were co-ordinated by former councillor Zirout Youssef; French military posts, police stations, and the homes of Europeans were hit. ^0 Europeans died in Philippeville. The French responded harshly, with villages suspected of harbouring rebels being razed and 500,000 French troops being sent to maintain order. Barbed wire was erected along the borders with Tunisia and Morocco because these two newly-independent states were aiding the rebels. The French mounted a retaliatory raid into Tunisia, sparking UN intervention.

23/12/1954, France sent 20,000 troops to Algeria.

1/11/1954. A nationalist uprising began against the French in their colony of Algeria. On 23/12/1954 France sent 20,000 troops to Algeria. By September 1955 there were about 120,000 French troops in Algeria, a number quadrupled by December 1956 with still no end to the troubles in sight.  The war continued until the Evian agreement of March 1962.

6/1954, Pierre Mendes-France became head of the French administration in Algeria.

3/6/1943, Charles de Gaulle of France set up the Committee of National Liberation, through which he promised that Algerians would have a full say in how their country was run after World War Two. De Gaulle’s failure to honour thos promise after the War was a major factor in the hardening of Algerian desire for independence.

1924, Ferhat Abbas (1899-1985) founded the Muslim Student’s Association in Algeria. He served as a volunteer in the French Army from 1939 but after France was defeated, in 1942 he campaigned for Algerian independence, joining the FLN (Front de Liberation Nationale) in 1955. After Algerian independence was achieved in 1962 he became president of the National Constitutent Assembly. He subsequentlt fell out of favour with the Algerian Government, but was rehabilitated shortly before his death.

8/6/1903, The French bombarded the town of Figig, Algeria, in retaliation for indigenous attacks on French colonialists.

26/5/1883, Abd el Kader (born 1807), died. He led Arab resistance to the French occupation of Algeria. He also took steps to protect the Christian minority in Algeria, during an anti-Christian uprising in 1860.

1875, Between 1830 and 1875 French colonists had killed some 875,000 Algerians, around 30% of the population. Several hundred thousand more died in famines, exacerbated by European land seizures. Meanwhile by 1881 some 385,000 European settlers had arrived in Algeria.

5/12/1844. The French garrison at Biskra, Algeria, was massacred by the Arabs.

28/6/1835, The French were defeated at Makta, Algeria, by Abd al Qadir.

5/7/1830. Algiers capitulated to a French invasion force. France had maintained economic relations with the Algiers

coastal area (Barbary coast) since the 16th century. French coral fishermen had operated there, and wheat was bought from Algeria to send to France. In 1827 a dispute arose between the French and two Jews of Algiers, Bakri and Busnach. In the course of the negotiations in April 1827 the Dey of Algiers struck Deval, the French consul, with a fly whisk. This was used by the French as an excuse for armed intervention. A three-year blockade of Algiers followed, followed by 38,000 French troops landing at Sidi Ferruch on 5/7/1830. Algiers capitulated on 5/7/1830. However the French found that occupying Algiers by no means gave them control over the interior of the country and its native population. Only by 1848 was the French conquest of Algeria complete.


Appendix 2 – Angola

22/2/2002. Jonas Savimbi, leader of the UNITA opposition to the Angola Government in a protracted civil war since 1975, died, aged 67 (born 1934). The Portuguese left Angola in 1975 and the MPLA (Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola) gained power; Savimbi began fighting against it. He USA and the apartheid regime in South Africa funded Savimbi and his UNITA party, because MPLA was Marxist and funded by the USSR and Cuba. On 4/4/2002 a truce was signed between the Angolan government and UNITA, who became the official opposition party of Angola.

20/11/1994, The Angolan Government and UNITA signed the Lusaka Protocol.

19/6/1993, The US recognised the Government in Angola.

1/3/1984, A joint South African-Angolan monitoring commission began monitoring South African troop withdrawal from Angola.

15/9/1993. The USA, Britain, and other Western countries agreed to sanctions on Jonas Savimbi’s UNITA forces fighting the Angolan government.

20/1/1993. Jonas Savimbi’s UNITA rebels took the important Angolan oil refining town of Sayo.

6/10/1992. A truce in the 16-year-old civil war in Angola looked fragile after UNITA disputed election results giving the MPLA government, under President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos a 51% to 39% lead over Jonas Savimbi.

30/9/1992. In Angola’s first democratically-held elections, Jose Eduardo dos Santos defeated Jonas Savimbi.

31/5/1991, The 17-year civil war in Angola ended.

10/1/1989, Cuban troops began withdrawing from Angola.

22/12/1988. The withdrawal of Cuban troops from Angola was announced.

8/8/1988. Angola, South Africa, and Cuba agreed a ceasefire in the Angolan Civil War.

26/8/1981, President P W Botha conformed that South African troops were fighting alongside guerrillas in Angola.

4/5/1978. South Africa raided SWAPO (South West African People’s Organisation) bases in Angola.

4/4/1978. The Angolan government began an offensive against UNITA forces.

19/2/1976. The Cuban backed MPLA won the Angolan civil war, and was recognised by most other countries.  See 10/11/1975.

24/11/1975. Civil war began in Angola.

11/11/1975. Angola became independent from Portugal, but three different liberation factions were fighting for control.  320 years of Portuguese occupation ended. Civil was began between the Cuban-backed MPLA (People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola) and the Western backed UNITA (National Union for the Total Independence of Angola) and the South African backed FNLA (National Front for the Liberation of Angola).  See 19/2/1976.

10/1/1975, The Portuguese Government agreed on independence for Angola.

23/5/1970, Portuguese forces attacked guerrilla bases in Angola.

1966, UNITA (Uniao Nacional para a Independencia Total de Angola, National Union for the Total Independence of Angola) was founded by Jonas Savimbi.

9/6/1961, The UN called on Portugal to cease repressive measures in Angola.

4/2/1961, The MPLA began its fight against the Angolan Government at Luanda.

1617, The Portuguese founded the settlement of Benguela, Angola.

1575, The Portuguese founded the settlement of Luanda, Angola.


Appendix 3 – Benin (Dahomey)

1975, Dahomey was renamed Benin.

1/8/1960, Benin (Dahomey) became independent from France.

22/6/1894, Dahomey (Benin) became a French colony.

3/12/1892. The French imposed a protectorate on Dahomey (Benin) after they captured its capital, Abomey.

1670, The French established a trading post at Offa, on the coast of Dahomey (Benin).


Appendix 4 – Botswana

1967, Diamonds were discovered at Orapa, Botswana.

30/9/1966. Botswana became independent. It had formerly been called Bechuenaland.  Sir Setese Khama was its first President.

13/7/1980, Sir Seretse Khama, President of Botswana since 1966, died in a London hospital.

1965, Gaborone was designated as the capital of Botswana. The Botswana Democratic Party won the elections, and Seretse Khama became Prime Minister.

3/3/1965, Bechuanaland (now Botswana) became self-governing, with Seretse Khama as Prime Minister.

1962, Seretse Khama founded the Botswana Democratic Party.

1961, In Botswana, Seretse Khama was appointed to the Executive Council.

1959, Copper mining began in Botswana.

1950, In Botswana, the British deposed and exiled Seretse Khama, Chief of the Ngwato.

11/9/1895, Three African Chiefs, Khama of the Ngwato tribe, Bathoen of the Ngwaketse and Sebele of the Kwena,  from Bechuanaland (now Botswana) met with the British Prime Minister, Joseph Chamberlain, Their mission was to obtain British protection from the exploitative colonisation of Cecil Rhodes, who was then establishing White economic domination over African lands across much of southern Africa. In fact Rhodes was then preparing for the disastrous Jameson Raid See South Africa, 1896 against Chamberlain’s wishes. This made Chamberlain more sympathetic to the African Chiefs, and British Royal protection was granted to the existing tribal rule in Bechuanaland.

8/10/1885, Britain claimed the Bechuenaland Protectorate (now Botswana).

1867, Gold mining began in Botswana.

1801, First European exploration of Botswana began.


Appendix 5 – Cameroon

11/10/1992, In Cameroon’s first multi-party elections, President Biya won a slim majority.

1986, Lake Nyos, having become supersaturated with carbon dioxide from volcanic activity below, erupted a huge cloud of the gas, which then flowed downhill, suffocating 1,700 people within 15 minutes.

1961, Cameroon became independent.

1/10/1961. The British Trust territory of Southern Cameroons joined with French Cameroons to form the Republic of Cameroon.

1/1/1960. The independent Republic of the Cameroons was proclaimed.

18/2/1916, The last German garrison in Cameroon surrendered.

10/6/1915, Second Battle of Garua. The remaining 249 German and African troops stationed in garrisons around Garua, Kamerun surrendered to British and French forces.

1884, Cameroon became a German protectorate.

11/7/1884, Germans began to sign up Cameroon chiefs as subjects.

1472, The Portuguese began slave trading in the Cameroons region.


Appendix 6 – Cape Verde

17/2/1991, The Cape Verdean Presidential election, Cape Verde's first multiparty presidential election since 1975, was won by Antonio Mascarenhas Monteiro.

5/7/1975, Cape Verde gained independence from Portugal after nearly 500 years of colonial rule.

1462, The Portuguese established, on the Cape Verde Islands, the colonial city of Ribiera Grande (now called Cidade Velha). This was the first European city on the Tropics, with a cathedral, foirtrfess, walls and slave market.

1441, The Portuguese discovered the Cape Verde Islands.


Appendix 7 -  Chad

30/5/2016, The trial of Hissein Habre, aged 73, former President of Chad 1982-1990, concluded. He was found guilty by the Court in Senegal of crimes including mass rape and torture. Overall, an estimated 40,000 people were murdered under his rule before he was deposed and fled into Senegal.

20/7/2015, The trial of former Chadian President (1982-1990), Hissein Habre, began, see 30/5/2016.

2/2/2008, Rebels attacked N’Djamena, capital of Chad.

23/12/2005, Chad declared a state of war with Sudan.

5/4/1993, Republican Guards killed 64 in Chad.

28/11/1990, The President of Chad, Hissein Habre, was deposed by the Patriotic Salvation Movement and replaced as president by its leader, Idriss Deby.

31/8/1989. Libya and Chad signed a peace agreement ending 25 years of war.

17/9/1984, France and Libya reached agreement on the withdrawal of both countries’ troops from Chad by mid-November.

19/8/1983, France sent a further 3,500 troops to assist President Hissein Habre of Chad.

11/8/1983, Faya Largeau in Chad fell to Libyan troops.

7/8/1983, France sent paratroopers to supplement 500 ‘military instructors’ in Chad.

2/8/1983, Libyan planes bombed Faya Largeau in Chad.

7/6/1982, The FAN (Armed Forced of the North) rebels in Chad, backed by Libya, entered the capital, N’Djamena and replaced President Oueddei Goukoni with President Hissein Habre (42). Chad has a long history of conflict between the nomadic Arab Muslim north and the Black Christian south.

19/11/1981, Civil war began in Chad as the rebel FAN (Armed Forces of the North) army backed by Libya fought to oust President Goukoni Oueddei, who himself had been installed with Libyan backing following the assassination of President Francois Tombalbaye in 1975. Tombalbaye had been the first President since Chad gained independence on 11/8//1960. See 7/6/1982.

11/8/1960, Chad formerly a French colony, became an independent Republic.

11/2/1912, The Niger-Chad border was delineated by the Governors-General of French West Africa and French Equatorial Africa.


Appendix 8 – Central African Republic

20/9/1979, Emperor’ Bokassa was deposed in Central Africa and a Republic restored under his cousin, David Dacko. Dacko had been President until Bokassa, then an army colonel, overthrew him in a coup in 1965. Bokassa now fled to France, amid accusations of child cannibalism, and he had wasted money on extravagant living.

4/12/1977. In the Central African Republic, Jean Bedel Bokassa crowned himself Emperor.

4/12/1976, The military ruler of the Central African Republic, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, declared the country a Parliamentary monarchy, the Central African Empire, with himself as monarch, Emperor Bokassa I.

1/1/1966. Bokassa took over as leader of the Central African Republic. In 1977 he organised a lavish coronation ceremony., appointing himself ‘emperor’, which cost US$20million, a quarter of his country’s annual income.

13/8/1960, The Central African Republic became independent.

29/3/1959, Barthelemy Boganda, Prime Minister of the Central African Republic, was born.

22/2/1921, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, ruler of the Central African Republic, was born.


Appendix 9 - Congo, Democratic Republic

2017, Civil unrest grew in the Congo as Joseph Kabila continued to delay presidential elections. The Catholic Church in Congo demanded that he step down. There were allegtaions that this very unrest was an excuse for not holding elections.

2016, Joseph Kabila’s last term as leader ended; the Constitution barred him from more than three terms. He remained anyway as leader.

2011, Joseph Kabila again won (unsafe) elections, remained as leader for a third five-year term.

2006, Joseph Kabila won partially-free elections, remained as leader for a second 5-year term.

2003, Peace brokered in the Congo. The conflict from 1998-2003 took between 1 million and 5 million lives, with atrocities suich as rape very common.

16/1/2001, Laurent Kabila, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, was assassinated. His son Joseph took over..

1998, Kabila switched sides and started arming the Rwandan rebels. Rwanda invaded again; Angola and Zimbabwe intervened to support Kabila.

16/5/1997, The Mobutu regime in Zaire collapsed.

1994. The Rwandan genocide (see Appendix 16 Rwanda). Defeated Rwandan rebels fled into the Congo. Rewandan forces followed them, and due to the unpopularity of Mobutu, Rwanda was able to oust him and replace with Laurent Kabila.

27/10/1971  Congo changed its name to Zaire, under President Mobutu.

4/6/1971, Joseph Kabila, leader of the Congo since 2001, was born.

29/6/1969, Tshombe (Katanga) died of a heart attack, in an Algerian prison.

30/6/1967, Moise Tshombe, former President of Katanga and former prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, was kidnapped to Algeria.

25/11/1965, In the Congo Republic (Zaire), General Sese Sese Mobutu deposed President Kasavubu.

30/6/1964, UN troops ceased fighting in the Congo.

14/1/1963. The secession of Katanga from the Congo ended, see 11/7/1960.  The province was renamed Shaba, and its capital town, formerly Elizabethville, was renamed Lubumbashi. 

29/12/1962, UN troops occupied Elisabethville (now Lubumbashi).

28/12/1962, UN troops engaged in heavy fighting in Katanga Province, Congo Republic.

10/10/1962, Ceasefire in the Congo civil war.

13/9/1961. U.N. forces defeated Katangan rebels. See 11/7/1960.

17/1/1961, Ex-President Patrice Lumumba of Zaire (deposed 14/9/1960) was executed by rebel Katangese troops.

14/9/1960, Successful military coup in Zaire by Colonel Mobutu, against President Lumumba.

28/7/1960, UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold arrived in the Congo in a bid to end the civil war there.

11/7/1960. Katanga rebels declared independence from the Congo under Tshombe.  See 13/9/1961.  Belgium sent troops to the Congo.  See 14/1/1963.

9/7/1960, Belgium began an airlift of 25,711 of its nationals back from the Congo, as that country became independent.

7/7/1960, Belgium sent troops to the Congo.

30/6/1960. The Belgian Congo became independent, under President Lumumba. Civil war erupted within a week, the mineral-rich region of Katanga seceded, and UN peacekeeping troops arrived as the Belgians left. In August the mineral-rich province of Kasai also seceded. Without these two provinces, Congo would have been one of the poorest countries in Africa. Paramilitary troops from Rhodesia, Europe, and South Africa were ready to defend breakaway Katanga and their mining interests. The UN said it would restore law and order but was not concerned with the secession of Katanga. Lumumba now made the mistake of turning to the USSR for help. Russia sent aid and Kasai was retaken for a while. However other government members decided to rid themselves of the radical Lumumba, and the Chief of Staff, Mobutu, set up a new government; Lumumba was assassinated in January 1961. Tschombe, leader of Katanga, was supported by the Belgian’s decision to pay mining royalties to him, not the Congo government. However the UN leader, Dag Hammarskjold, was determined to crown his first major international peacekeeping exercise with success, and there was now a pro-Western government in the Congo. Hammarskjold’s plane crashed in uncertain circumstances on 17 September 1961 whilst negotiating with Tschombe. There was fighting between Katangan and UN forces in Elisabethville, capital of Katanga, and the UN attitude hardened. The UN ordered the forcible occupation of Katanga, and in January 1963 UN forces fully occupied the breakaway province.

2/11/1959. Rioting in the Belgian Congo left 70 dead.

4/1/1959, Rioting in the Belgian Congo.

19/8/1908, King Leopold II of Belgium, under pressure from other European monarchs, handed over control of the Belgian Congo (Congo Free State), later known as Zaire, to the Belgian State. Leopold had ruled the region autocratically for nearly 30 years. The region had been explored by Henry Stanley, the expedition financed by a European consortium headed by King Leopold. This consortium sought to make financial gains from the Congo’s agricultural and mineral wealth, including ivory, rubber and palm oil. Trade agreements were made with the Congo’s tribal leaders and by 1884 Leopold claimed the colony as a personal possession. The rest of Europe consented to this claim. However by the 1890s Leopold saw fit to treat the Congo’s inhabitants as he liked; slavery was introduced, many brutalities were committed and under his rule the Congo population fell to 8 million, an estimated drop of 70%. The Brussels parliament agreed to pay Leopold 120 million Francs for the territory, and it became the Belgian Congo until independence in 1960.

1/7/1885, The sovereignty of King Leopold I of Belgium over The Congo was proclaimed.

1/8/1884. King Leopold of Belgium formally proclaimed the Congo Free State today as a Belgian colony, following the concessions made by other European powers to him at Berlin in February 1884.

3/5/1491, The ruler of the Kingdom of Kongo, Nkuwu Nzinga, was baptised by Portuguese missionaries, adopting the baptismal name of João I.

385, Copper mining and smelting at Kansanshi, Congo/Zambia region.


Appendix 10 – Cote D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)

11/4/2011, Laurent Gbagbo, former President of the Cote D’Ivoire, was captured.

7/12/1993, Felix Houphouet Boigny, President of Cote d’Ivoire, died.

7/8/1960. Ivory Coast became independent from France.

10/1/1889. France declared a protectorate over the Ivory Coast.


(Gambia – see Senegal)


Appendix 11 - Ghana

31/12/1981. Flight Lieutenant Jerry Rawlings seized power in Ghana, ousting President Limann whom he accused of ruining the economy.

4/6/1979, Flight Lieutenant Jerry Rawlings lead a military coup which deposed President F Akuffo of Ghana.

27/4/1972, Kwame Nkrumah, former Ghanaian president and Prime Minister, died. Ousted in a military coup in 1966 whilst he was in China, he died in Bucharest, Hungary.

13/1/1972, Kofi Busha, ruler of Ghana, was overthrown in a coup led by Ignatius Katu Acheampong (1931-79). Acheampong was himself overthrown (1978) and executed in 1979.

27/12/1971, Kofi Busia, Prime Minister of Ghana, signed an agreement with the IMF for economic aid on condition that he massively devalue the Ghanaian currency. Previously Busia had artificially manipulated prices in Ghana, keeping agricultural prices low so as to keep urbanites happy and boost Government revenue. However this resulted in a huge balance of payments deficit and foreign exchange shortage.

10/9/1966, Sir Seretse Khama became President of the Republic of Ghana.

24/2/1966, Kwame Nkrumah, President of Ghana since its independence in 1957, was overthrown by an army coup and went into exile in Guinea.

23/1/1963, The Volta River Project, Ghana, to dam the River Volta, was inaugurated by Dr Nkrumah.

16/12/1961, The USSR agreed to make a loan to Ghana for the construction of the Volta River Project, for generating hydroelectric power.

28/9/1961, In Ghana, President Kwame Nkrumah imprisoned leading members of the opposition, claiming a plot to assassinate him.

1/7/1960. Ghana became independent (formerly Gold Coast and British Togoland).  Kwame Nkrumah was its first President.

6/3/1957. Ghana, formerly known as the Gold Coast, became independent; the first British colony in Africa to do so. It had been a British colony since 1874. Dr Kwame Nkrumah became the first Prime Minsiter, in the capital, Accra. Nkrumah’s party had won the 1956 elections. The name Ghana was chosen by Nkrumah to inspire his people from the time when Africans had wealth and power. it was taken from the Islamic empire which ruled for centuries in Sudan during Europe’s Mediaeval times. On 7/3/1957 Ghana joined the United Nations.

22/6/1947, Jerry Rawlings, President of Ghana, was born.

18/9/1909, Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first Prime Minister, was born in Ankroful. He was President from independence in 1957 until an army coup sent him into exile in Guinea in 1966.

25/9/1901. Britain annexed the Asante Kingdom (Ghana) as part of the Gold Coast.

18/1/1896, British troops took Kumasi and took the Ashante King prisoner in the Fourth Ashante (Ghana) War.

4/2/1874, The Battle of Kumasi ended the Second Ashanti War.

31/1/1874, Battle of Amoaful, Second Ashanti War.

7/8/1826, The British defeated the Ashanti near Accra (Ghana).

1637, The Dutch drove the Portuguese out of the Gold Coast colony (now Ghana).

1481, The Portuguese established a trading post on the coast of Ghana.

800, The Kingdon of Ghana was becoming wealthy through its trade in gold and salt.


Appendix 12 – Kenya

7/8/1998, A lorry bomb exploded outside the US embassy in Kenya.

14/10/1978, Daniel Arap Moi became President of Kenya.

22/8/1978. Jomo Kenyatta, first President of Kenya since 1964, died in Mombasa aged 86. He was succeeded as leader by Daniel Mori.

5/7/1969, Tom Mboya, leader of the campaign for Kenyan independence from Britain, was assassinated in Nairobi.

12/12/1964. Kenya became a republic in the Commonwealth.  Kenyatta continued as head of state, see 12/12/1963.

10/11/1964, Kenya became a one-party State after the Kenya African Democratic Union Party merged with the Kenyan Africa National Union Party.

12/12/1963. Kenya became independent, with Kenyatta as President.

1/6/1963, Jomo Kenyatta became the first Prime Minister of a self-governing Kenya.

21/8/1961, Britain released Jomo Kenyatta, who had been imprisoned for his part in the Mau-Mau rebellion, to facilitate Kenyan political negotiations.

18/1/1955, The Kenyan government offered terms to the Mau-Mau.

31/12/1954, The Mau Mau had murdered 30 European farmers since October 1952; as law and order were enforced again in 1955, only two more White farmers were killed. However since October 1952 the Mau Mau had murdered some 1,800 Christian Kikuyu who had refused to join them.

24/4/1954, 40,000 Mau-Mau suspects were arrested in Kenya.

12/3/1954, In Kenya, the British arrested 700 Mau-Mau activists.

8/4/1953. In Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta and 5 others were convicted of being members of the Mau-Mau terrorists, and sentenced to seven years hard labour. The Mau-Mau had been waging a terrorist war to drive White settlers out of east Africa.

25/11/1952, 2,000 Kikuyu were rounded up in Kenya as the Mau-Mau began an open revolt against British rule.

18/11/1952, In Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta was charged with being the head of the Mau Mau.

21/10/1952, The President of the Kenya African Movement, Jomo Kenyatta, was arrested as Britain crushed the Mau Mau revolt.

20/10/1952. A state of emergency was declared in Kenya because of Mau-Mau terrorists, killing White settlers.

24/8/1951. The Mau-Mau rebellion began in Kenya.

15/8/1930, Tom Mboya, Kenyan trade unionist, activist and statesman, was born (died 1969).

2/9/1924, Daniel Arap Moi, President of Kenya, was born.

16/5/1907. Nairobi was chosen as capital of British East Africa (Kenya) because of its location on the Mombasa-Uganda railway.


Appendix 13 - Liberia

4/6/2007, At The Hague, the war crimes trial of Charles Taylor, former Liberian President, began.

23/11/2005, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was elected as first female President of Liberia.

4/1999, Civil war restarted in Liberia; conflict continued until 2003.

7/1997, Charles Taylor was elected President of Liberia. He was backed by Libya.

6/6/1993. In Liberia, 270 civilians were massacred when rebel forces of the Patriotic National Front attacked a rubber plantation near Monrovia.

10/9/1990, Liberian President Samual Doe died after being captured by rebels. Prince Johnson took over government.

7/6/1990. Civil war continued in Liberia, as rebels from the National Patriotic Front, led by Charles Taylor, advanced on the capital Monrovia. Fughting had started in December 1989.

24/12/1989, Rebel forces led by Charles Taylor entered Liberia from Cote D’Ivoire, with the objective of deposing the dictatorial Liberian President Samuel Doe.

23/7/1971, W V S Tubman, President of Liberia, died aged 75.

29/10/1938, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of Liberia, was born.

1926, The US company, Firestone Tyre and Rubber, established operations in Liberia.

11/12/1900, William D. Coleman, the President of Liberia since 1896, resigned under pressure after failing to extend government control further away from the capial. Coleman, frrom Fayette County, Kentucky, was replaced by Secretary of State Garretson W. Gibson.

29/11/1895, William Tubman, President of Liberia, was born.

26/7/1847, Liberia became the first African colony to attain independence.

22/1/1824, The Ashanti army heavily defeated the British in the Gold Coast.


Appendix 14 – Libya

26/2/2004, The US lifted a travel ban on visiting Libya, ending restrictions that had been in force for 26 years.

5/4/1999, Two Libyans suspected of the bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie in 1988 were handed over to the Scottish authorities for eventual trial in The Netherlands.  The UN suspended sanctions against Libya.

11/11/1993. The USA imposed new sanctions on Libya for refusing to handover two suspects wanted for the Lockerbie bombing of a Pan Am plane.

15/4/1992, UN sanctions imposed on Libya (authorised by the UN, 31/3/1992) came into effect. These were because of Libya’s refusal to hand over two men suspected of the Lockerbie bombing.

31/8/1989. Libya and Chad signed a peace agreement ending 25 years of war.

5/1/1989, A US aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean shot down two Libyan fighter aircraft.

28/12/1987, Tunisia and Libya restored diplomatic relations.

17/4/1986, In Libya, three British hostages were murdered in revenge for British participation in US air raids on Libya.

8/1/1986. President Reagan froze Libyan assets in the US. Mrs Thatcher refused to join the US in this action.

10/3/1982, The USA embargoed oil imports from Libya, alleging Libyan involvement in terrorist groups.

6/5/1981. The USA expelled all Libyan diplomats.

16/1/1970, Colonel Ghaddafi became Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council in Libya.

14/11/1969. Ghaddaffi nationalised all foreign banks in Libya.

1/9/1969. President Ghaddaffi ousted King Idris of Libya in a military coup.

24/12/1951. Independent kingdom of Libya was established.  Idris I, aged 61, was the first King.

21/11/1949, The United Nations declared that Tripolitania should form part of the independent state of Libya.

25/10/1938. Libya was incorporated into Italy.

1/1/1935. The Italian colonies of Cyrenaica, Tripoli, and Fezzan were renamed Libya.

14/1/1928. Clashes between Italians and tribesmen in Libya, 100 tribesmen killed.

6/12/1925, Italy agreed the frontier of Libya with Egypt.


Appendix 15 – Madagascar

26/6/1960, Madagascar became an independent republic.  It had been a French colony since 1896.

14/10/1958, Madagascar gained autonomy.

29/3/1947. Nationalist uprising in Madagascar against the French.

7/5/1942, Madagascar was occupied by British troops to forestall any Japanese invasion.

1897, End of the reign of the last monarch of Madagascar, Queen Ranavalona (reigned 1883-97).

6/8/1896. Madagascar was proclaimed a French colony.

30/9/1895. The capital of Madagascar, Tananarive, surrendered to the French.

5/8/1890.  Britain agreed to recognise Madagascar as a French colony and France recognised Zanzibar as a British protectorate. France gave up claims to the lower Niger and retained the desert territories of the Sahara.

13/6/1883, The French continued fighting in Madagascar.  Tamatave was bombarded and French subjects expelled from the capital.

16/5/1883, The French commenced hostilities in Madagascar, bombarding Majunga.


Appendix 16 – Malawi

6/7/1971, Dr Hastings Banda was sworn in as President of Malawi for life, having established a One-Party State.

6/7/1964. Malawi, formerly Nyasaland, became independent.  It had been a British Protectorate since 1891. The Scottish explorer David Livingstone named the lake, Lake Nyasa, after being told that was its name by the locals; however nyasa meant ‘mass of waters’. So Lake Nyasa meant ‘lake-lake’. On independence the name Malawi was chosen, from the former 16th century Kingdom of Maravi, believed to have ruled over the Zambesi river as far as Mombasa.

1/2/1963, Nyasaland became independent, later to be called Malawi.

3/3/1959, In Nyasaland (Malawi) Hastings Banda and other leaders of the Nyasaland African Congress were arrested.

20/2/1959, Disturbances in the British territory of Nyasaland (now Malawi).

1/8/1953, Nyasaland (now Malawi) federated with Southern and Northern Rhodesia to form  the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. This federation lasted until 1963.

1907, Hastings Kumuzu Banda, first President of independent Malawi in 1964, was born in what was then the British Protectorate of Nyasaland.


Appendix 17 – Mali

11/1/2013, The French army began operations against Islamic militants in northern Mali.

1/9/2012, Islamist rebels captured the town of Douentza in Mali.

6/4/2012, Islamic militants unilaterally declared the secession of northern Mali as the republic of Azawad. Europe feared a new area of Jihadism in the Sahara.

22/9/1960, Mali became independent.

20/6/1960, Mali became independent from France as the federation of Mali, including Senegal.  See 22/8/1960.

17/1/1959. Senegal and French Sudan united to form Mali.

1464, The Songhai Empire overran large areas of the Sahel, of what is now Mali and Timbuktu.

1341, Sulaiman became King of Mali.

1324, Mansu Musa, King of Mali, travelled to Mecca. The splendour of his court astounded all those who visited it.

1235, Sundiata Keita became King of Mali; ruled until 1255.


Appendix 18  – Morocco

16/5/2003, In Casablanca, Morocco, 5 simultaneous suicide bombings struck at US and Israeli targets, killing 45.

20/7/1999, The death of King Hassan II of Morocco prompted widespread mourning across the Arab world.

30/6/1969, Spain returned the enclave of Ifni to Morocco; however the towns of Ceuta and Melilla were retained.

31/8/1961, Last Spanish troops withdrew from Morocco.

26/2/1961, King Hassan II became ruler of Morocco on the death of his father, King Mohammad V.

14/6/1958, France announce it was withdrawing its troops from Morocco.

7/4/1956, Spain relinquished its protectorate over Morocco.

2/3/1956, The Treaty of Fez was terminated. France officially recognised the independence of Morocco.

30/3/1952, Anti-French riots in Tangier, French Morocco.

20/2/1952. NATO agreed to recruit Morocco.

23/5/1926, In Morocco, the French seized Rif, and the rebel leader Abd El Krim surrendered.

11/7/1925, France and Spain agreed to coordinate their efforts in the Rif War.

18/12/1923, The International Zone of Tangier (Morocco) was set up.

21/7/1921, The Spanish army was defeated by Moroccan nationalists at Annual.  The Spanish sustained over 12,000 casualties.  Adb-E-Krim, nationalist leader, was eventually defeated by a Franco-Spanish force in 1926. Abd E Krim was held on the island of Reunion till 1947 but was then given permission to live in France.  However he succeeded in escaping to Egypt where he became an inspiration to Arab nationalism generally.

1/9/1912, French troops quelled an uprising in Morocco.

11/8/1912, In Morocco, Sultan Mulai Hafid abdicated.

30/3/1912. By the Treaty of  Fez, Morocco became a French protectorate. This Treaty was terminated on 2/3/1956.

1/7/1911, Germany sent a gunboat to Agadir, Morocco, to protect German commercial interests there from French expansion in Morocco.  Britain was concerned about Germany’s ambitions in Africa so close to Gibraltar.  See 21/7/1911.

16/6/1911. The French army occupied Fez, in Morocco.

3/12/1910. France occupied the Moroccan port of Agadir.

23/8/1908, The Battle of Marrakesh. Abd-al-Aziz IV, Sultan of Morocco, was defeated by his elder brother, Mulay Hafid, who had been proclaimed Sultan in May.

4/8/1907, The French navy bombarded the Moroccan port of Casablanca, after anti-Western demonstrations there.

7/4/1906. The Conference of Algecieras ended.

16/1/1906. The Algecieras Conference – see 28/8/1904.

31/3/1905, Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany arrived in Tangier, Morocco, to give a speech in favour of Moroccan independence. This was intended to humiliate France, who saw Morocco as their own protectorate, and to test the closeness of the Franco-British entente. Germany intended to subsequently ‘grant France limited control in Morocco’, a move supposed to bring France closer to Germany and away from Britain. However Germany was surprised by the forcefulness with which British Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey backed France; Germany was further isolated from France, Britain and hence Russia too. This event paved the way for the Agadir crisis of 1911.

3/10/1904. France and Spain agreed that northern Morocco was recognised as a Spanish zone of influence.

28/8/1904. A treaty was concluded in London whereby France would allow the British freedom of action in Egypt in return for the British allowing the French a free hand in Morocco. For many years the nominally independent Sultanate of Morocco had been losing power as it became increasingly dependent on French, Spanish, and German business and subsidies for financial security. In October 1904 the French also concluded a secret treaty with the Spanish. This disturbed Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany who saw his country being squeezed out of North Africa. Wilhelm II therefore landed at Tangier on 31 March 1905. The sultan sided with the Germans and serious friction with the French resulted. On 161/1906 the Algecieras Conference was held. German claims were backed by Austria whilst French claims were backed by Britain. Germany failed to curb France’s privileged position in Morocco. See 8/4/1904.

3/7/1880, Morocco’s independence was recognised by the European powers and by Russia.

10/9/1844. France and Morocco signed the Treaty of Tangiers, ending their conflict. France withdrew from Morocco.

1/7/1844. A French squadron under the Duke of Joinville bombarded Tangiers.

1062, The city of Marrakesh was founded.


Appendix 19 – Mozambique

3/11/1986, Joaquim Chissano was elected President of Mozambique.

23/11/1977, Rhodesian troops entered Mozambique and killed over 1,000 alleged guerrillas.

1976, Renamo (Resistencia Nacional Mozambicana) was set up within Mozambique with the help of Rhodesia and later with South African assistance also. It was an armed resistance movement against the Frelimo Government.

3/3/1976, The newly-independent country of Mozambique closed its border with Rhodesia, as a protest against the illegal regime there.

25/6/1975. Mozambique became independent from Portugal.  This followed a ten-year war against Portuguese colonial rule.

20/9/1974, Friday (+10,727) A Nationalist government took control in Mozambique, headed by Jacques Chissano.

1/1970, Construction work began on the Cabora Bassa dam, Zambesi River, Mozambique.

1962, Frelimo, the Frente de Libertacao de Mocambique, was founded in Dar es Salaam. Initially led by Eduardo Mondlane, until his assassination, it fought for the independence of Mozambique from the Portuguese. When independence was achieved in 1975, the Marxist-Leninist Frelimo became the only legal party in Mozambique. A civil war began with the violent dissident group Renamo, which by the end of the 1990s had claimed over 100,000 lives and created one million refugees. Frelimo and Renamo siged a peace treaty in 1992, and Renamo was recognised as a legitimate political party. Frelimo won Mozambique’s first multiparty elections in 1994.

1894, The Mapondera Movement began a resistance against Portuguese taxation, led by Kadungire Mapondera. Regarded as a hero by the local workers, he was captured and executed in 1904.

13/7/1622, English and Dutch ships defeated the Portuguese near Mozambique.


Appendix 20 – Namibia

1994, South Africa ceded control of the enclave of Walvis Bay to Namibia.

30/11/1992, SWAPO won a landslide victory in elections in Namibia.

1/1/1989. Namibia was granted independence from South Africa.

13/12/1988, In Brazzaville, South Africa signed an accord granting independence to Namibia.

11/1989, After a protracted war in Namibia between SWAPO and South African forces, that cost the lives of over 2,500 South African soldiers and was costing South Africa over US$ 1 billion annually, elections were held under UN supervision. SWAPO won these elections, led by Sam Nujoma.

1968, The UN called on South Africa to withdraw from Namibia, following a war of independence waged by the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO) from 1966. In 1971 the International Court of Justice ruled that South African occupation of Namibia was illegal.

1958, SWAPO (South West Africa People’s Organisation) was founded to organise the guerrilla war against the South African administration of the country.

13/12/1950. South Africa again refused to place South West Africa under UN Trusteeship.

21/1/1947, South African President J C Smuts refused to place South West Africa under UN Trusteeship.

17/12/1920, The League of Nations ratified South African rule over Namibia (South West Africa), a territory taken by South Africa from German rule in 1915.

30/5/1919, At the Paris Peace Conference, Britain agreed to the transfer of part of German South West Africa to Belgium.

12/5/1915, South Africa occupied Windhoek, capital of German South West Africa.

1908, Diamonds were discovered in Namibia, increasing European interest in the area.

28/11/1904, Rebel tribesmen in South West Africa were defeated by the Germans, see 3/10/1904.

3/10/1904. African tribes revolted in south-west Africa against German rule, see 28/11/1904.

24/4/1884. Bismarck cabled Cape Town to state that South West Africa was a German colony.

1486, Portuguese navigator Diogo Cao landed on the coast of Namibia. However European colonisation of the area did not begin until the 1840s, with Germany claiming the region in 1884.


Appendix 21  -Niger.

18/2/2010, The President of Niger was overthrown in a military coup.

9/4/1999, The President of Niger, Ibrahim Bare Mainassara, was assassinated.

3/8/1960, Niger became independent from France.


Appendix 22  -Nigeria & Biafra.

9/11/2014, Islamic terrorists dressed in school uniforms set off suicide bombs at a school assembly.

14/4/2014, Islamic terrorists set off a bomb in Abuja, Nigeria, killing 70.

10/11/1995, The Nigerian military government hanged the dissident Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other activists. They had been protesting against the exploitation of the Ogoni people and their lands by large oil companies. In particular, an oil leak from an old pipeline in August 1995 had polluted Ogoni lands. Oil and gas had been discovered in the Niger delta in 1957 and commercial exploitation began a year later. In 1995 oil accounted for 80% of Nigerian government earnings and 90% of foreign exchange earnings.

18/10/1998, 700 people died in a fire in southern Nigeria as they scavenged oil leaking from a pipeline.

9/5/1987, Abufemi Awolowo, Nigerian politician, died.

27/8/1985, President Buhari of Nigeria was overthrown in a coup, and replaced by Major General Babangida.

1/1/1984, In Nigeria, a 19-member Supreme Military Council assumed power.

30/1/1983, Nigeria expelled Ghanaians from its territory.

31/7/1979, Nigeria seized British oil installations, in a bid to persuade Mrs Thatcher to take a harder line on Apartheid.

29/7/1975, A military coup in Nigeria.

12/1/1970. Nigeria’s civil war ended when the Biafran Army surrendered. The expected massacre of Biafrans by Nigerian soldiers never occurred; Gowon pursued a policy or reconciliation, with the line that Biafra had been ‘led astray’ by Ojukwu.

10/1/1970, At the last meeting of the Biafran Cabinet, General Ojukwu handed command to his Chief of Staff, General Effiong, and fled to Cote D’Ivoire. Morale in the Biafran Army finally cracked, with soldiers discarding their uniforms and mingling with refugees.

30/6/1969, The Nigerian Government seized control of all relief for Biafra.

27/3/1969, Harold Wilson arrived in Nigeria for talks with General Gowon.

2/7/1968, Britain offered famine relief to both Nigeria and Biafra. Biafra refused it whilst the Uk was still supplying arms to Nigeria.

31/5/1968, Nigerian – Biafran peace talks in Kampala, Uganda, broke down.

19/5/1968. Nigerian forces captured Port Harcourt in the civil war against the breakaway region of Biafra.

7/7/1967. Nigerian troops invaded the breakaway region of Biafra, see 30/5/1967. The Biafrans had, initially, the main oil reserves and the refinery at Port Harcourt, so were able to secure help and weapons from abroad. However they faced an overwhelmingly larger Federal Nigerian Army. The ruler of Nigeria, Gowon, faced the threat of regional secession and was determined to maintain the unity of his country.

30/5/1967. Biafra, 44,000 square miles, seceded from Nigeria under the military commander of the Eastern Ibo region, Odumegwu Ojukwu, starting a civil war. See 7/7/1967, 19/5/1968, and 12/1/1970.  Nigeria at independence in 1960 had a population of around 50 million, consisting mainly of Muslim Hausa and Fulani in the north, Catholic Ibos in the east, and Muslim Yorubas in the west. There was considerable enmity between the Ibos and the Muslims.  In January 1966 a coup by Major-General Johnson Ironsi, an Ibo, replaced the civilian post-independence government, This coup provoked a massacre of Ibos in the northern Muslim regions. At end July 1966 a second coup, by northern Army officers, deposed Ironsi, who was then tortured and murdered. General Yakubu Gowon, a Christian from a minority tribe, now came to power. He tried to reassure the Ibos but hundreds of thousands of them fled to the eastern Ibo region for safety. Gowon planned to institute a 12-region federal structure for Nigeria, but the military Governor of the eastern region, Colonel Chukwuemeka Ojukwu, refused to accept this. Ojukwu was a wealthy Ibo, Oxford-educated, who declared the oil-rich Eastern Region independent on 30/5/1967 as Biafra, hoping for support from the oil multinationals. However Nigerian troops overran Biafra, over an extended time period, making Biafra a byword for mass starvation.

Biafran-controlled territory shrank, by September 1968, to a landlocked enclave 100km by 50 km. Ojukwu hired a Swiss public relations firm, Markpress, to plead his cause to the world. Markpress played the religious factor, painting (to the West) Ojukwu as a Christian under Muslim threat; Gowon countered that many on the Nigerian side, including Gowon himself, were also Christian. From August 1968 aid agencies began sending food aid to the starving Biafrans. France backed the Biafran side and sent military aid via Gabon and Cote D’Ivoire. Britain and Russia both backed the Nigerian side. Mercenaries under Colonel Rolf Steiner arrived to bolster the Biafran forces; this held back the Nogerian forces, however only prolonging the suffering of the Biafran people. Nigeria, unable to overcome Steiner’s men, settled upon bombing raids and blockade. Gowon blocked food aid, arguing it was being used as a cover for arms shipments.

29/7/1966, General Yakubu Gowon succeeded General Ironsi as ruler of Nigeria, after an army mutiny.

1/10/1963. Nigeria became a republic within the Commonwealth.

1/6/1961. Northern Cameroon joined the Federation of Nigeria.

1/10/1960. Nigeria became independent.

27/10/1959, The Queen’s Speech promised independence for Nigeria.

11/3/1913, Britain and Germany agreed on the border between Nigeria and Cameroon.

1904, Nmandi Azikiwe, member of the Ibo community, the first President of independent Nigeria, was born at Zungeri in northern Nigeria. He was principal director of the African Continental Bank, becoming Governor General of independent Nigeria in 1960, and President when Nigeria became a Republic in 1963. He was overthrown by an army coup in 1966; the army officers were also mostly Ibo, and dod not harm Azikiwe but forced him into private retirement.

15/3/1903. The British completed the conquest of northern Nigeria.

3/2/1903, The British captured Kano from Nigerian rebels.

1/1/1900. Nigeria became a British protectorate. Previously the area had been under control of the Royal Niger Company. Frederick Legard became High  Commissioner of the territory.


999, Baguda became King of Kano (now in Nigeria).

950, The Igbo-Ukwu culture began flourishing in eastern Nigeria.


Appendix 23 – Rwanda

19/11/2008, Germany extradited Rose Kabuye to France, where she faced charges over the killing of a former Rwandan President, Juvenal Habyarimana.  This incident sparked the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

15/11/1996. Mass migration as Hutu refugees returned to Rwanda.

4/3/1996. UN forces left Rwanda as the UN mandate ended.

1994, President Paul Kagame seized power in Rwanda, ending the genocide. See also Appendix 5 Congo Democratic Repubic

4/7/1994. Kigali fell to the Rwandan Patriotic Front. After the Rwandan President was killed in an air crash (see 6/4/1994) violence occurred against the Tutsi minority. Half a million died and 1.5 million refugees were created.

21/4/1994, The Red Cross estimated that 100,000 had died in the Rwandan Genocide.

6/4/1994. An air crash killed the Presidents of both Rwanda (President Juvenal Habyarimana) and Burundi (President Cyprien Ntaryamira). The Rwandan Patriotic Front was suspected but so were Hutu extremists opposed to the Arusha Agreement. See 5/10/1993 and 4/7/1994. On 7/4/1994 the Hutu militia, known as the Interhamwe, began organising the killing of many Tutsis.

5/10/1993, The UN created a body to oversee the Arusha agreement, see 4/8/1993 and 6/4/1994.

4/8/1993. The President of Rwanda’s Hutu-dominated government, Juvenal Habyarima, signed the Arusha Peace Agreement with the opposition Rwandan Patriotic Front, whose mainly Tutsi forces were closing in on the capital, Kigali. A ceasefire was agreed and plans made for power-sharing. 2,500 UN troops were pledged to oversee  the implementation of the agreement. But on 4/8/1993 Kigali’s Radio television Libre des Milles Collines began broadcasting Hutu-supremacist, anti-Tutsi, propaganda. See 5/10/1993.

13/3/1992. In Rwanda, fighting broke out between the Hutus, who held power, and the Tutsis.

4/10/1990, As Ugandan troops invaded Rwanda, France and Belgium sent troops there to protect their nationals.

1/7/1962. Rwanda and Burundi became independent.  They had formerly been part of the Belgian administration of Ruanda-Urundi.

8/3/1937, Juvenal Habyarimana, President of Rwanda, was born.


Appendix 24 – Senegal & Gambia

29/4/1992, The autocratic Siaka Stevens regime in Sierra Leone was overthrown, by a group led by Captain Valentine Strasser.

22/2/1992, The Pope visited Goree Island, near Dakar, Senegal, to commemorate the ‘forgotten holocaust’ of the estimated 15 million slaves who passed through this way on route to slavery in the Americas.

1/2/1982 Senegal and Gambia formed a loose federation.

24/4/1970, After a national referendum, Gambia, which had been a British colony since 1843, became a Republic within the Commonwealth.

18/2/1965. The Gambia, the smallest country in Africa, became an independent monarchy. It had been a British colony since 1843.

22/8/1960. Senegal seceded from Mali.

20/8/1960, Senegal became independent.

4/4/1960, Senegal became independent.

20/4/1857, The west African Muslim leader Al Hajj Uman laid siege to the French fort at Medine, Senegal.

1661, Britain took control of The Gambia territory, by occupying Fort James at the mouth of the River Gambia.

1626, French settlement of Senegal.


Appendix 25 – Seychelles

18/6/1976, Britain granted independence to the Seychelles.

1810, France ceded the Seychelles to Britain.

1770, France colonised the Seychelles, at that time uninhabited, principally to deny the British a port on the way to India.


Appendix 26 – Sierra Leone

18/1/2002, The civil war in Sierra Leone ended.

27/4/1961. Sierra Leone became independent, and joined the Commonwealth.

11/3/1792, Hundreds of freed African slaves gathered beneath a 300-year-old cotton tree to celebrate the founding of Freetown, Sierra Leone. The tree had begun growing about the time slave shipments first began out of Africa.


Appendix 27 – Somalia

25/4/2013, The UK reopened its embassy in Somalia, closed for 25 years.

17/6/1993. In Somalia, UN ground troops along with US helicopters launched a dawn raid on the HQ of General Mohammed Farrah Aidid, in retaliation for an attack that left 24 Pakistani peacekeepers dead 12 days earlier. Aidid escaped capture or death.

15/1/1993. The situation in Somalia continued tense despite a ceasefire brokered and enforced by US troops. In December 1992 President Bush had begun emergency food supplies to Somalia.

5/7/1992, UN forces arrived in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, to help with food distribution.

23/2/1992, A ceasefire was agreed in Somalia.

3/1/1992. Civil war continued in Somalia.

21/2/1991. Somalia had virtually disintegrated through civil war, sending many refugees to nearby countries.

1/1991, President Siad Barre was forced to flee Somalia; his rule had become more repressive since his failed invasion of Ethiopia in 1977. His departure left a political vacuum that was filled by rival warlords.

3/4/1988. Ethiopia and Somalia concluded a peace agreement, ending 11 years of border conflict.

18/10/1977. German anti-terror forces stormed a hijacked Lufthansa airliner at Mogadishu, Somalia, killing three Palestinian terrorists and freeing all the hostages. Three of the four hijackers were killed.

23/7/1977, Somalia, under President Siad Barre, invaded the Ogaden region of Ethiopia, in support of the guerrillas of the ‘Western Somali Liberation Front’.  See 21/1/1978.

1/4/1950, Italy took over the Somaliland Trusteeship from Britain.

11/1/1904, British troops massacred 1,000 rebels in Somaliland, who were under the command of theMad Mullah’

4/1/1903, British forces under General Manning landed at Obbia to attack the army of Mohammed bin Abdullah, the so-called ‘Mad Mullah’.

28/5/1902. British marched against the 'Mad Mullah' in East Africa.


Appendix 28 - Sudan & South Sudan

9/7/2011, The new country of South Sudan officially seceded from Sudan, following a pro-independence referendum in January 2011.

9/1/2011, A referendum in Sudan resulted in a mandate for the independence of Southern Sudan.

14/8/1994. Carlos the Jackal was arrested in Sudan.

1989, In Sudan, the National Islamic Front seized power in Khartoum. This further anatgonised the rebel Christian/Animist South.

6/4/1985, Coup in Sudan, led by General Swar al Dahab.

1983, In Sudan, the Khartoum Government rescinded the autonomy of southern Sudan, and imposed Sharia Law across the entire country. Rebel army units ion the ssouth formed the SPLA (Sudan People’s Liberation Movement). The SPLA and Anyanya rebels joined forces.

1981, The Anyanya insurgency restarted in southern Sudan; known as the Anyanya 2 Rebellion.

1972, Peace agreed in Sudan between southern Anyanya rebels and the government. Ethiopia acted as peace broker.

1/1/1956. Sudan became independent, having been administered jointly by Britain and Egypt.

1955, The Anyanya I Rebellion in Sudan, by southern Anyanyas against the northern Muslims.

25/6/1924, Britain said it would not relinquish control over the Sudan, despite Egyptian demands for it to do so.

19/1/1899. Britain and Egypt established a condominium over Sudan.

2/9/1898. Sir Herbert Kitchener led the 25,000-strong British forces to victory over the Mahdists at Omdurman, Sudan, killing 10,000 of the Dervish force, for 500 British deaths, and took Khartoum. This ended 14 years of Dervish rule after the Mahdi, Muhammad Ahmad, had massacred General Charles Gordon and his entire garrison at Khartoum in 1885.

8/4/1898, The Battle of Atbara, Sudan.

7/8/1897, The town of Abu Hamid was captured by the British from the Mahdists, Sudan.

21//9/1896. Herbert Kitchener, who took control of the Anglo-Egyptian army in March 1896, with the aim of re-conquering the Sudan, took the town of Dongola.

17/7/1894. Italians took Kassala on the Eritrea/Sudan border from the Mahdists.

9/3/1889, King Yohannes IV was killed in the Battle of Metemma; Sudanese forces, almost routed, rallied and destroyed the Ethiopian Army.

20/12/1888, The Battle of Suakin, Sudan.

21/6/1885, In Sudan, the Mahdi died and was succeeded by the Khalifa Abdullah el Tasshi, who managed to conquer the entire country.

26/1/1885. General Gordon, British commander and Governor of the Sudan, was killed by a spear whilst besieged by the Mahdis at Khartoum. Two days after the city fell, a relief force under General Wolseley arrived.

17/1/1885. British forces marching to relieve General C G Gordon at Khartoum were attacked by the Mahdists, at Abu Klea, but repelled them.  Khartoum fell to the Mahdis on 26/1/1885.

16/4/1884, The siege of Khartoum by the Mahdi began, see 26/1/1885.

29/3/1884, At the Battle of El Teb, or Trinkitat, British forces defeated the Mahdi in Sudan.

13/3/1884, At the Battle of Tamai, British forces defeated the Mahdi in Sudan.

18/2/1884. General Gordon, sent by the British to evacuate Khartoum, decided to stay there.

3/11/1883  Anglo-Egyptian forces under General Hicks were heavily defeated by Mahdist forces, causing a British withdrawal from the Sudan.


Appendix 29 – Tanzania

7/8/1998, A lorry bomb exploded outside the US embassy in Tanzania.

27/10/1985, Julius Nyerere retired as President of Tanzania after 24 years. He was succeeded by Ali Hassan Mwinyi.

29/1/1967, President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania issued the Arusha Declaration. It set out principles of ‘African Socialism’ which proved to be politically popular but economically disastrous.

29/10/1964, The name of Tanzania was officially adopted, for the union this day of Tanganyika and Zanzibar.

26/4/1964. Tanganyika and Zanzibar united as Tanzania. Julius Nyerere was the first President.

12/1/1964, Zanzibar was proclaimed a republic.. The Arab Sultan of Zanzibar was banished from the country, and an African-led government took control.

10/12/1963. Zanzibar became independent.  It had been a British Protectorate since 1890.

9/12/1962, Tanzania became a Republic within the Commonwealth, with Julius Nyerere as first President.

2/11/1962, Tangynika elected Nyerere as president.

9/12/1961, Tangynika became independent. See 9/12/1962.

1/9/1960. Nyerere became Tangynika's first Prime Minister.

8/5/1925, Ali Hassan Mwinyi, President of Tanzania, was born.

13/6/1916, Jan Smuts captured Wilthemstal in German East Africa (now Tanzania).

1/7/1913. Zanzibar was incorporated into British East Africa.

7/11/1890, Zanzibar became a British Protectorate.

17/2/1885, Germany established a protectorate over the Tanganyika coast.


Appendix 30 - Tunisia

1987, Zine el Abidine Ben Ali (born 1936) ousted President Bourguiba of Tunisia and became President himself. Bourguiba went into retirement.

22/7/1961, The UN ordered a ceasefire in Tunisia, after clashes between Tunisians and French.

17/2/1958, France and Tunisia agreed to mediation by the UK and USA.

11/2/1958, Tunisia banned French warships from using its port at Bizerta.

8/2/1958, France bombed the Tunisian town of Sakiet Sidi Youssef as a reprisal for alleged Tunisian involvement on a French patrol in Algeria near the Tunisian frontier on 11/1/1958. Tunisia confined all French troops in the country to barracks.

25/7/1957, Tunisia abolished the monarchy and became a republic.  Habib Bourguiba was elected as the first President.

20/3/1956. Tunisia became independent, having been a French Protectorate since 1881.

20/2/1952. NATO agreed to recruit Tunisia.

12/5/1881. Tunisia became a French Protectorate. The French invaded in April 1881 when the Tunisian first minister made various reforms taking away French economic privileges. See also Islam.


Appendix 31 - Uganda

16/8/2003. Idi Amin, former (mad) dictator of Uganda, died. He was born in January 1925 into a Nubian tribe in the West Nile region. In 1946 he joined the King’s Africa Rifles as a cook. At 6’ 4’’tall, weighing 16 stone, he was a good boxer, and was Ugandan heavyweight champion for nine years. He was also a good marksman, but missed out on army promotion when he was found in bed with a colleague’s wife and had to flee naked down the street.

His ruthless nature emerged during the Mau-Mau rebellions of the 1950s, when he would line the tribesmen up with their penises on a table and threaten to chop them off with a machete unless they revealed their hidden weapons caches. He was never court-martialled, despite torturing to death three Kenyan tribesmen. He was a sergeant-major at Uganda’s independence in 1962, and was a close aide of President Milton Obote until Obote began to ask questions about arms spending.

On 25/1/1971, whilst Obote was abroad, Amin, by now a general, sent tanks into the capital, Kampala, and declared Uganda to be under his military rule. He first purged the ranks of the military; 32 senior officers were killed in one go when their barracks was blown up. Other officers were shot, hanged, or beheaded. Amin set up the State Research Bureau, whose 3,000 officers could intern people on mere suspicion of sedition. Survivors of these internment camps told of being forced to smash other prisoner’s heads with sledgehammers, or even being forced to butcher, cook, and eat them, in order to be spared themselves. Many victims were thrown to the crocodiles in the Nile at Karume Falls Bridge.

During his eight year rule of Uganda, over 300,000 Ugandans were killed by his administration, sometimes publicly, on television. He was reputed to have kept the heads of his more powerful opponents in a fridge, so he could carry on berating them; he admitted to occasional cannibalism, disliking not the act itself but the taste of human flesh – he found it too salty. He murdered his first wife’s uncle, who was also his Foreign Minister; soon after divorcing his second wife her dismembered body was found in a car boot. He divorced another two wives over the radio. On 10/8/1972 Amin denounced Uganda’s 70,000 Asians as crooks, racketeers, and racists who prevented their daughters from marrying Africans and gave them 90 days to leave the country, minus all their assets; they were permitted one suitcase each. This effectively stripped Uganda of all its civil servants, administrators, and business leaders. Some 80% of Uganda’s businesses were left leaderless, and British businesses were nationalised the following year.

Amin claimed Scotland had offered him its crown if he helped it separate from Britain, and he took to wearing a kilt. He proposed to patch up Anglo-Ugandan relation by marrying Princess Anne. Idi Amin advised Nixon to jail the opposition during the Watergate scandal. Amin sent a message of support to Kurt Waldheim, former Nazi who became Secretary general at the UN, after Waldheim was accused of war crimes; Amin said Hitler’s only mistake was to .lose the war. In Uganda, Amin forbade facial hair, shorts for men and trousers and mini-skirts for women; he banned flip-flops and forced two offenders to eat theirs.

The Entebbe crisis of 1976 was the beginning of the end of Amin’s rule. In revenge for an Israeli raid on the airport to free hostages held by Palestinian guerrillas, the Ugandan army killed an elderly British woman, Dora Bloch. By 1978 every non-Arab nation had severed relations with Uganda, which was in ruins economically. Amin then invaded Tanzania. He sent President Julius Nyere a telegram saying ‘I love you so much if you were a woman I would marry you’, even as Ugandan troops were slaughtering Tanzanians and their livestock over 700 square miles of Tanzania. Ugandan rebel forces joined with the Tanzanian army and Amin’s regime fell on 10/4/1979.

Amin managed to escape, first to Libya, then Iraq and finally Saudi Arabia. He gave up his flamboyant uniform for Muslim robes and a skull-cap, and appeared to be a devout Muslim, living in a luxurious villa in Jeddah. Giving up alcohol, he was said to eat 40 oranges a day ‘to keep up his sex drive’. Amin drove a white range-rover, switching to a blue Cadillac on his birthday.

On 18/7/2003 he was admitted to a Saudi hospital with kidney problems, having suffered for years with high blood pressure. He fell into a coma and died on 16/8/2003.

12/1/1989, Former Ugandan President Idi Amin was expelled from Zaire; he sought refuge in Senegal.

27/7/1985, Ugandan President Milton Obote, who regained power in 1980 after being deposed by Idi Amin in 1971, was overthrown in a military coup. He was replaced by General Tito Okello.

10/12/1980. In the first elections in Uganda for 18 years, Dr Milton Obote was declared the winner.

11/4/1979. Kampala, capital of Uganda, was captured by Tanzanian forces who deposed General Idi Amin. Fighting continued in Uganda, and on 22/4/1979 Tanzanian forces captured Jinja, 50 miles from Kampala. Idi Amin fled to Libya as troops closed in on his capital.

22/3/1979. Ugandan Army troops surrounded the home of General Idi Amin but he slipped away undetected. Under Amin’s rule some 300,000 Ugandans were killed. Amin became President in 1972, overthrowing Milton Obote; his downfall came when he invaded northern Tanzania in 1971. President Nyerere retaliated, assisting Ugandan rebels to depose Amin.

8/11/1978, Uganda dropped its territorial claim on Tanzania.

12/10/1978, Border clashes between Uganda and Tanzania, caused by Idi Amin’s expansionist claims on Tanzanian territory.

17/6/1977. Britain recalled its last two ambassadors from Uganda after threats against them from President Idi Amin.

16/2/1977, The Archbishop of Uganda, the Most Reverend Janani Luwum, was murdered by Idi Amin’s troops.

27/7/1976, The UK broke off diplomatic relations with Uganda.

25/6/1976. In Uganda, Idi Amin declared himself President for life.

13/7/1975. President Idi Amin of Uganda was promoted from General to Field Marshall.

25/3/1974. Fifty army officers were killed after a failed coup attempt against President Idi Amin of Uganda.

30/11/1972, The UK Government cancelled a planned £10 million loan to Uganda because of Amin’s treatment of the Asians there.

22/9/1972, Idi Amin gave the remaining 80,000 Ugandan Asians 48 hours to leave Uganda.

6/8/1972. Idi Amin  began expelling 50,000 British Asians from Uganda. He gave all Ugandan Asians who were not citizens of Uganda 90 days in which to leave the country.

2/2/1971, Idi Amin dissolved the Ugandan Parliament and formed a Defence Council with himself as Chairman. Idi Amin’s rule favoured the Muslims of northern Uganda, amongst whom he had originated.

25/1/1971. Major General Idi Amin (born 1926) seized power in Uganda, deposing President Milton Obote whilst he was abroad at the Singaporean meeting of the Commonwealth.  In March 1979 Uganda was invaded by Tanzanian and dissident Ugandan forces, deposing  Idi Amin. Amin fled to Libya.

8/9/1967, Uganda became a republic, with Milton Obote as the first President.

9/10/1962. Uganda became independent, after 62 years of British rule. Milton Obote was the first Prime Minister.  See 25/1/1971.

1/3/1962, Uganda achieved full self-government, with Benedicto Kiwanuka as Prime Minister.

29/4/1954, Queen Elizabeth II opened the Owen Falls hydroelectric dam at Owen Falls, Uganda.

28/12/1924, Milton Obote, President of Uganda, was born.

11/4/1894. Britain established a protectorate over Uganda.


Appendix 32 – Western Sahara

6/8/2016, The newly-elected leader of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), or Western Sahara, President Brahim Gali, vowed to continue the fight for liberation from Moroccan occupation.

10/4/1979, Cambodia recognised the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic.

14/4/1976, Spain withdrew the last of its troops from the Spanish Sahara. This allowed Morocco to annex the phosphate-rich country.

27/2/1976, The Western Sahara declared its independence. Spain gave up its territories in the Sahara but retained the enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta.

14/11/1975, Spain pulled out of the Western Sahara under the Madrid Accord. However this left the territory vulnerable to occupation by Morocco.

10/5/1973, The Polisario was founded by radical students at Ain Bentili. Its aim was to free the Western Sahara from Spanish, then Moroccan, control.


Appendix 33 – Zambia

31/10/1991, President Kaunda of Zambia was heavily defeated in elections.

24/10/1964. Northern Rhodesia became the independent Republic of Zambia.  Kenneth Kaunda was the first President.  This ended 75 years of British rule.

11/8/1964, A Christian-sectarian based rebellion in Zambia, the Lumpa Church, led by Alice Lenshina ended.

22/1/1964, Kenneth Kaunda, leader of the United National Independence Party, became the first President of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia).

18/5/1960. The Queen Mother opened the Kariba dam on the Zambesi River.

6/1959, The wall of the Kariba Dam (Zambia-Zimbabwe border) was completed.

6/11/1956. Work began on the Kariba High Dam on the River Zambesi, between Zambia and Zimbabwe. See 18/5/1960.

28/4/1924, Kenneth Kaunda, Zambia’s first President, was born in Lubwa.

1910, The city of Lubumbashi was founded, originally called Elizabethville, in the copper mining area of Shaba, Zambia.

1905, The city of Lusaka was founded.


Appendix 34 – Zimbabwe (Rhodesia)

21/11/2017, Mugabe bowed to the inevitable and officially resigned as Preident of Zimbabwe. He was succeeded by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

15/11/2017, An army coup in Zimbabwe deposed 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe.

11/2/2009, Morgan Tsvangirai became the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe under a power-sharing agreement with President Mugabe, signed in September 2008.

15/9/2008, In Zimbabwe, negotiations resulted in a power-sharing agreement between President Robert Mugabe and opposition leaders Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara; Tsvangirai to be the new Prime Minister.

11/3/2002. President Mugabe of Zimbabwe ‘won’ presidential elections, widely held to have been rigged.

16/2/2000. President Mugabe of Zimbabwe began invading white owned farms in that country. The first white farmer to be murdered by Mugabe’s ‘war veterans’ was David Stevens, on 15/4/2000. By 15/5/2000 1,000 farms had been invaded and 19 people killed in political violence. See 16/10/2000.

22/12/1987, Prime Minister Mugabe of Zimbabwe and Joshua Nkomo agreed to unite the ZANU (PF) and ZAPU parties.

8/8/1984, In Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe announced plans for a one-Party State

9/3/1983, Joshua Nkomo fled Zimbabwe.

17/4/1982. Salisbury, capital of Zimbabwe, was renamed Harare.

18/4/1980. Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia, formally became independent. See 25/9/1976. Robert Mugabe had become Prime Minister of Zimbabwe on 4/3/1980.

11/3/1980. Robert Mugabe became Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, formerly Southern Rhodesia.

4/3/1980. Robert Mugabe was elected Prime Minister of Zimbabwe. Southern Rhodesia had been a British colony since 1889.

27/1/1980, Robert Mugabe, guerrilla chief, returned from three years exile to Salisbury, Rhodesia (now Harare, Zimbabwe) to participate in elections that would transfer the country to Black majority rule, under the Lancaster House Agreement. Mugabe, who was expected to win the elections, said that, just because White people oppressed Black people when they had the power, it should not mean that now Black people would oppress White people.

12/12/1979. Lord Soames arrived in southern Rhodesia as the official governor, ending 14 years of rebellion and UDI.

10/9/1979, The Lancaster House Conference in the future of Rhodesia opened.

5/8/1979, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher urged rebel leaders in Rhodesia to hold talks.

1/6/1979, Rhodesia officially changed its name to Zimbabwe.

29/5/1979. Bishop Abel Muzorewa became Rhodesia’s first Black Prime Minister.

30/1/1979, White voters in Rhodesia voted to ratify the new Constitution.

10/9/1978, Martial law was imposed in parts of Rhodesia.

4/9/1978, In Rhodesia, guerrillas fighting the Ian Smith regime shot down an airliner with a Russian SAM-7 missile, then massacred the survivors of the crash; they claimed the aeroplane was a ‘legitimate military target’.

16/5/1978, Rhodesian forces killed 94 at a Black political meeting.

21/3/1978. The first Black Ministers joined the government of Rhodesia. However Robert Mugabe and Joshua Nkomo were excluded.

3/3/1978, Rhodesian forces attacked Zambia.

15/2/1978, Rhodesia’s Ian Smith and three Black leaders agreed on a transfer to Black majority rule.

24/11/1977, Ian Smith said he accepted the idea of universal adult suffrage in Rhodesia, which would mean a Black Government.

1/9/1977, Anglo-American proposals for a transition to legal rule in Rhodesia were published.

31/8/1977. In Rhodesia, Ian Smith’s Rhodesian Front Party won an overwhelming victory.

24/1/1977, The second round of Rhodesian talks failed; Ian Smith rejected British proposals for a transfer of power to Black majority rule.

28/10/1976, A conference on Rhodesia opened in Geneva.

25/9/1976. The government of Rhodesia, led by Mr Ian Smith, announced its acceptance of African rule within two years. Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia, became independent on 18/4/1980.

23/3/1976, Ian Smith rejected Harold Wilson’s conditions for a Rhodesian settlement.

3/8/1973, Race riots at the University of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).

2/3/1970. Rhodesia was declared a republic. Formerly the colony of Southern Rhodesia, Prime Minister Ian Smith declared UDI.

12/2/1969, Ndabaningi Sithole, leader of the Zimbabwe African National Union, was convicted of incitement to murder Ian Smith.

9/10/1968, Harold Wilson, British PM, met Ian Smith for further talks about Rhodesian independence aboard HMS Fearless moored off Gibraltar.  The talks failed to resolve the situation.

7/10/1968. Rhodesia’s leader Ian Smith announced that there would be no majority rule in Rhodesia in his lifetime. He continued with talks between himself and Prime Minister Harold Wilson; but Mr Smith said that ‘ordinary Africans were incapable of answering the simplest question regarding a constitution’.

22/12/1966, Rhodesia left the Commonwealth.

6/12/1966. Ian Smith of Rhodesia refused UK government proposals to end UDI. Rhodesia left the Commonwealth on 22/12/1966.

2/12/1966, British Prime Minister Harold Wilson met Ian Smith on HMS Tiger off Gibraltar, for talks on the independence of Rhodesia.

9/4/1966, The UN authorised Britain to seize by force any oil being shipped to Rhodesia.

2/3/1966, Britain protested to Portugal about oil supplies reaching Rhodesia via Mozambique.

17/2/1966, The UK protested to South Africa about petrol supplies to Rhodesia.

31/1/1966, Britain banned all trade with Rhodesia.

18/12/1965, Nine African States broke off relations with the UK for not using force against Rhodesia.

17/12/1965, Britain imposed an oil embargo on Rhodesia.

11/11/1965. Rhodesia declared UDI from Britain under Ian Smith, the Prime Minister. The opposition leaders Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe were in jail. The British Prime Minister Harold Wilson imposed trade sanctions and an oil embargo. However South Africa, and the neighbouring Portuguese colonies of Mozambique and Angola, assisted Mr Smith in overcoming sanctions, and large multinationals evaded them anyway. However the end of Portuguese rule in Angola and Mozambique in 1975 undermined Mr Smith’s regime and assisted the transfer to Black majority rule there.

25/10/1965. Harold Wilson went to Rhodesia for talks with Ian Smith. But see 11/11/1965.

7/10/1965. Ian Smith met Harold Wilson for talks at 10 Downing Street; the talks failed to avert UDI by Rhodesia on 11/11/1965.

27/10/1964, Wilson warned Rhodesia that a declaration of UDI would be treason.

6/9/1964, Ian Smith arrived in the UK for talks on independence.

13/4/1964. Ian Smith became Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). He succeeded Winston Field, who had resigned.

11/10/1962, Hugh Foot resigned as British representative at the UN in protest at the British Government’s support for the regime in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).

20/9/1961. Rhodesian Prime Ministers Ian Smith banned the Black opposition party.

18/5/1960. The Queen Mother opened the Kariba dam on the Zambesi River.

6/1959, The wall of the Kariba Dam (Zambia-Zimbabwe border) was completed.

26/2/1959, State of Emergency in Southern Rhodesia.

6/11/1956. Work began on the Kariba High Dam on the River Zambesi, between Zambia and Zimbabwe. See 18/5/1960.

30/5/1925, The British colony of Southern Rhodesia became self-governing as its assembly met for the first time.

21/2/1924, Robert Mugabe, President of Zimbabwe, was born.

10/10/1923. Rhodesia, formerly administered by the British South African Company, became a self-governing British colony.

27/10/1922, A referendum in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) decided against a union with South Africa.

8/4/1919. Ian Smith, Prime Minister of Rhodesia, was born in Selukwe, then Southern Rhodesia.

1/4/1905, The Victoria Falls Bridge (Zimbabwe – Zambia) was completed.

18/11/1904, Gold was discovered in Rhodesia.

4/11/1893. The British defeated the Matabele in battle in Zimbabwe and occupied the capital, Bulawayo.

12/9/1890. The British South Africa Company founded the town of Salisbury, now Harare, after a pioneer march from South Africa.  It was named after the British Prime Minister, Lord Salisbury.


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