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Monday, January 23, 2017

How were the borders of Africa's countries formed ?

As you have read, most experts believe that the world's earliest people lived in Africa. Some of these people migrated from Africa into Asia and Europe.

The ancient Egyptian and Nubian civilizations developed in northern Africa. Africa was where important trade routes were started and where Ghana and Mali, large empires based on trade, first grew.

The events that would lead to the creation of Africa's present-day countries took place just 500 years ago. At that time, European countries were beginning to build colonies in Africa. The borders of these colonies were formed by the Europeans' desire for resources rather than by the location of the different African cultural groups. For example, the land of the Somali people and other groups was divided among several different colonies. These colonies later became the independent countries of Somalia, Kenya, and Ethiopia. Today Somali people live in all three countries.

Present-day countries of Africa are still feeling the effects of the European divisions. In some cases, people of the same ethnic group are separated by the boundary lines of countries. In other cases, enemy groups must live together in the same country. In the 1990s, conflicts arose in Rwanda and Burundi because of the European divisions. Fighting broke out between two rival ethnic groups, the Hutu and the Tutsi.

Conflict between peoples also led to the forming of Africa's newest country. This country, Eritrea (air • ih» TREE »uh), was once the northeastern part of Ethiopia. After a 30-year civil war, the Eritreans gained their freedom from Ethiopia in 1993.

In 1997, another change came about in Africa, when a new government was formed in Zaire. At that time the country changed its name to become the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

 How were the borders of Africa's countries formed?


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