Decolonization in Belgium Essay

2156 WordsAug 31, 20149 Pages
Decolonization Decolonization began in the 19th century (in Latin America) and is not yet finished. But most of the countries became politically independent after World War II. The right of self-determination of the peoples was decided in the UN Charter of 1945 and within only two decades the whole system of colonialism collapsed. In 1955 there was a conference in Bandoeng, Indonesia, in which 29 former African and Asian colonies decided not to take part in the East-West-Conflict. The consequences of colonialism were enormous. In many new and independent states colonialism was followed by civil war and military dictatorship. There have also been economic and social crises from which the former colonies have not yet recovered and social and economic structures often remained. Decolonization in Africa: By the end of World War II there were only four independent states in Africa: Liberia, Ethiopia, Egypt and the South-African Union. The rest of the countries were mainly British and French colonies, but there were also Belgian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese colonies. Germany had already lost its colonies after World War I. 1960 is known as the "African Year": 17 colonies gained their independence;Benin, Cote d'Ivoire, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Gabun, Senegal,the Cameroons,Madagascar Somalia, Central Africa, Mali,Togo, Chad ,Mauretania, Zaire Congo, Niger. The Congo free state Until the later part of the 19th century, few Europeans had ventured into the Congo basin. The rainforest , swamps and accompanying malaria, and other diseases, such as sleeping sickness , made it a difficult environment for European-style exploration and exploitation. In 1876, King Leopold II of the Belgians organized the International African Association with the cooperation of the leading African explorers and the support of several European governments for the promotion of

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