This Week in African History: 8 – 14 January


The Big Picture:Africa History

Donald Woods escapes to Lesotho, Joy Adamson is killed in Kenya, Joe Slovo dies in South Africa, and two Libyan MiG-23s are shot down by US Navy jets off the coast of Libya.

1 January:

1978 — South African newspaper editor, Donald Woods, has escaped the country into Lesotho. Woods was banned by the South African Apartheid government after he voiced criticism over the role of the police in the death of activist Steve Biko.

For more on 1 January.

2 January:

1977 — Peace proposals presented to Rhodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith by the British envoy Ivor Richard are not accepted.

1995 — Death of Muhammad Siyad Barre, Chairman of the Supreme Revolutionary Council of Somalia from 1969 – 76, and then President from 1976 – 91.

For more on 2 January.

3 January:

1980 — Joy Adamson, naturalist and author of Born Free, is killed in Kenya. It is believed by authorities that a lion was responsible for her death.

1985 — Israel has halted its secret airlift of Ethiopian Jews after its disclosure in the press. The Falashas, black Jews who have lived in Ethiopia for centuries, are said to be the descendants of the lost tribe of Dan.

For more on 3 January.

4 January:

1989 — Two Libyan MiG-23s are shot down by US Navy jets 100 km (70 miles) from the coast of Libya. The Pentagon claims that it was self-defence, but Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Muhammad Gaddafi has classed it as “premeditated aggression” and vowed revenge.

For more on 4 January.

5 January:

2004 — The Forces for National Liberation (FNL), Burundi’s main rebel group, has agreed to take part in peace talks with President Domitien Ndayizeye.

For more on 5 January.

6 January:

1995 — Death of Joe Slovo from leukaemia. An anti-Apartheid activist, Slovo was one of the founders ofUmkhonto we Sizwe (MK), the armed wing of the ANC, and was general secretary of the South African Communist Party during the 1980s.

For more on 6 January.

7 January:

1987 — Soldiers in the British Army, who have just returned from a tour in Kenya, are recommended to take HIV/AIDS tests.

2004 — The Sudan government has signed a wealth-sharing agreement with the Sudan People’s Liberation Army and Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLM/A).

For more on 7 January.



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