Africa 1960 CE

The European nations are starting to withdraw from the empires in Africa.

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What is happening in Africa in 1960CE

World Wars

Both World War 1 and World War 2 saw significant campaigns on African soil, and also thousands of African troops serving in other parts of the world in the service of  the colonial powers. As a result of the First World War, the German territories were transferred to France (Cameroon) and Britain (in South West Africa and East Africa). In the years since the Second World War, the European powers have begun withdrawing from Africa.


This process of decolonization is the result of several factors. Most immediately it is in response to nationalist movements within Africa. Secondly, it is the result of international pressure from the USA and the Soviet Union, at that time involved in a global competition for dominance in the Cold War. Finally, it comes from the European countries’ own awareness of their economic weakness after two world wars.

The North African countries became independent from France in 1956 – except Algeria, where the French settlers have insisted that Algeria becomes administratively integrated with France, and where a major uprising has thus broken out.

French West Africa was divided amongst a cluster of newly independent countries by the end of 1960.

The British left Egypt in 1947, Sudan in 1956, Ghana in 1957, and Nigeria and Somalia in 1960. Large chunks of East Africa remain under British rule at the end of 1960, but these  are all preparing for independence.

The Belgians hurriedly withdraw from the Congo in 1960 with no preparation, leaving it in such chaos the the UN has to send troops to keep order there; and the Portuguese seem to be making no moves to leave.

In South Africa, even though it has been independent from Britain since 1931, a white regime is in power. Under the system of Apartheid, it ensures that whites remain dominant within the country, politically, economically and socially.

Next map, Africa 2005

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World War 1

World War 2

Cold War

European World Empires


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