Republic of the Congo
The Republic of the Congo known as Congo-Brazzaville, the Congo Republic or the Congo, is a country located in the western coast of Central Africa. It is bordered by five countries: Gabon to its west; the region was dominated by Bantu-speaking tribes at least 3,000 years ago, who built trade links leading into the Congo River basin. Congo was part of the French colony of Equatorial Africa; the Republic of the Congo was established on the 28th of November 1958 but gained independence from France in 1960. The sovereign state has had multi-party elections since 1992, although a democratically elected government was ousted in the 1997 Republic of the Congo Civil War, President Denis Sassou Nguesso, who first came to power in 1979, has ruled for 33 of the past 38 years; the Republic of the Congo has become the fourth-largest oil producer in the Gulf of Guinea, providing the country with a degree of prosperity despite political and economic instability in some areas and unequal distribution of oil revenue nationwide.
Congo's economy is dependent on the oil sector, economic growth has slowed since the post-2015 drop in oil prices. Bantu-speaking peoples who founded tribes during the Bantu expansions displaced and absorbed the earliest inhabitants of the region, the Pygmy people, about 1500 BC; the Bakongo, a Bantu ethnic group that occupied parts of present-day Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formed the basis for ethnic affinities and rivalries among those countries. Several Bantu kingdoms—notably those of the Kongo, the Loango, the Teke—built trade links leading into the Congo River basin; the Portuguese explorer Diogo Cão reached the mouth of the Congo in 1484. Commercial relationships grew between the inland Bantu kingdoms and European merchants who traded various commodities, manufactured goods, people captured from the hinterlands. After centuries as a major hub for transatlantic trade, direct European colonization of the Congo river delta began in the late 19th century, subsequently eroding the power of the Bantu societies in the region.
The area north of the Congo River came under French sovereignty in 1880 as a result of Pierre de Brazza's treaty with King Makoko of the Bateke. This Congo Colony became known first as French Congo as Middle Congo in 1903. In 1908, France organized French Equatorial Africa, comprising Middle Congo, Gabon and Oubangui-Chari; the French designated Brazzaville as the federal capital. Economic development during the first 50 years of colonial rule in Congo centered on natural-resource extraction; the methods were brutal: construction of the Congo–Ocean Railroad following World War I has been estimated to have cost at least 14,000 lives. During the Nazi occupation of France during World War II, Brazzaville functioned as the symbolic capital of Free France between 1940 and 1943; the Brazzaville Conference of 1944 heralded a period of major reform in French colonial policy. Congo benefited from the postwar expansion of colonial administrative and infrastructure spending as a result of its central geographic location within AEF and the federal capital at Brazzaville.
It received a local legislature after the adoption of the 1946 constitution that established the Fourth Republic. Following the revision of the French constitution that established the Fifth Republic in 1958, the AEF dissolved into its constituent parts, each of which became an autonomous colony within the French Community. During these reforms, Middle Congo became known as the Republic of the Congo in 1958 and published its first constitution in 1959. Antagonism between the Mbochis and the Laris and Kongos resulted in a series of riots in Brazzaville in February 1959, which the French Army subdued. New elections took place in April 1959. By the time the Congo became independent in August 1960, the former opponent of Youlou, agreed to serve under him. Youlou became the first President of the Republic of the Congo. Since the political tension was so high in Pointe-Noire, Youlou moved the capital to Brazzaville; the Republic of the Congo received full independence from France on 15 August 1960. Youlou ruled as the country's first president until labour elements and rival political parties instigated a three-day uprising that ousted him.
The Congolese military took charge of the country, installed a civilian provisional government headed by Alphonse Massamba-Débat. Under the 1963 constitution, Massamba-Débat was elected President for a five-year term. During Massamba-Débat's term in office the regime adopted "scientific socialism" as the country's constitutional ideology. In 1965, Congo established relations with the Soviet Union, the People's Republic of China, North Korea and North Vietnam. Massamba-Débat's regime invited several hundred Cuban army troops into the country to train his party's militia units and these troops helped his government survive a coup d'état in 1966 led by paratroopers loyal to future President Marien Ngouabi. Massamba-Débat was unable to reconcile various institutional and ideological factions within the country and his regime ended abruptly with a bloodless coup in September 1968. Ngouabi, who had participated in the coup, assumed the presidency on 31 December 1968. One year President Ngouabi proclaimed Congo Africa's first "people's republic"
Central African Republic
The Central African Republic is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It is bordered by Chad to the north, Sudan to the northeast, South Sudan to the east, the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the south, the Republic of the Congo to the southwest and Cameroon to the west; the CAR covers a land area of about 620,000 square kilometres and had an estimated population of around 4.6 million as of 2016. The C. A. R. is the scene of a civil war, ongoing since 2012. Most of the CAR consists of Sudano-Guinean savannas, but the country includes a Sahelo-Sudanian zone in the north and an equatorial forest zone in the south. Two thirds of the country is within the Ubangi River basin, while the remaining third lies in the basin of the Chari, which flows into Lake Chad. What is today the Central African Republic has been inhabited for millennia. After gaining independence from France in 1960, the Central African Republic was ruled by a series of autocratic leaders, including an abortive attempt at a monarchy.
Ange-Félix Patassé became president, but was removed by General François Bozizé in the 2003 coup. The Central African Republic Bush War began in 2004 and, despite a peace treaty in 2007 and another in 2011, civil war resumed in 2012, still ongoing. Despite its significant mineral deposits and other resources, such as uranium reserves, crude oil, diamonds, cobalt and hydropower, as well as significant quantities of arable land, the Central African Republic is among the ten poorest countries in the world, with the lowest GDP per capita at purchasing power parity in the world as of 2017; as of 2015, according to the Human Development Index, the country had the lowest level of human development, ranking 188th out of 188 countries. It is estimated to be the unhealthiest country as well as the worst country in which to be young; the Central African Republic is a member of the United Nations, the African Union, the Economic Community of Central African States, the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie and the Non-Aligned Movement.
10,000 years ago, desertification forced hunter-gatherer societies south into the Sahel regions of northern Central Africa, where some groups settled. Farming began as part of the Neolithic Revolution. Initial farming of white yam progressed into millet and sorghum, before 3000 BC the domestication of African oil palm improved the groups' nutrition and allowed for expansion of the local populations; this Agricultural Revolution, combined with a "Fish-stew Revolution", in which fishing began to take place, the use of boats, allowed for the transportation of goods. Products were moved in ceramic pots, which are the first known examples of artistic expression from the region's inhabitants; the Bouar Megaliths in the western region of the country indicate an advanced level of habitation dating back to the late Neolithic Era. Ironworking arrived in the region around 1000 BC from both Bantu cultures in what is today Nigeria and from the Nile city of Meroë, the capital of the Kingdom of Kush. During the Bantu Migrations from about 1000 BC to AD 1000, Ubangian-speaking people spread eastward from Cameroon to Sudan, Bantu-speaking people settled in the southwestern regions of the CAR, Central Sudanic-speaking people settled along the Ubangi River in what is today Central and East CAR.
Bananas added an important source of carbohydrates to the diet. Production of copper, dried fish, textiles dominated the economic trade in the Central African region. During the 16th and 17th centuries slave traders began to raid the region as part of the expansion of the Saharan and Nile River slave routes, their captives were enslaved and shipped to the Mediterranean coast, Arabia, the Western Hemisphere, or to the slave ports and factories along the West and North Africa or South the Ubanqui and Congo rivers. In the mid 19th century, the Bobangi people became major slave traders and sold their captives to the Americas using the Ubangi river to reach the coast. During the 18th century Bandia-Nzakara peoples established the Bangassou Kingdom along the Ubangi River. In 1875, the Sudanese sultan Rabih az-Zubayr governed Upper-Oubangui, which included present-day CAR; the European invasion of Central African territory began in the late 19th century during the Scramble for Africa. Europeans the French and Belgians, arrived in the area in 1885.
France seized and colonized Ubangi-Shari territory in 1894. In 1911 at the Treaty of Fez, France ceded a nearly 300,000 km² portion of the Sangha and Lobaye basins to the German Empire which ceded a smaller area to France. After World War I France again annexed the territory. Modeled on King Leopold's Congo Free State, concessions were doled out to private companies that endeavored to strip the region's assets as and cheaply as possible before depositing a percentage of their profits into the French treasury; the concessionary companies forced local people to harvest rubber and other commodities without pay and held their families hostage until they met their quotas. Between 1890, a year after the French first arrived, 1940, the population declined by half due to diseases and exploitation by private companies. In 1920 French Equatorial Africa was established and Ubangi-Shari was
Ethnologue: Languages of the World is an annual reference publication in print and online that provides statistics and other information on the living languages of the world. It was first issued in 1951, is now published annually by SIL International, a U. S.-based, Christian non-profit organization. SIL's main purpose is to study and document languages to promote literacy and for religious purposes; as of 2018, Ethnologue contains web-based information on 7,097 languages in its 21st edition, including the number of speakers, dialects, linguistic affiliations, availability of the Bible in each language and dialect described, a cursory description of revitalization efforts where reported, an estimate of language viability using the Expanded Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale. Ethnologue has been published by SIL International, a Christian linguistic service organization with an international office in Dallas, Texas; the organization studies numerous minority languages to facilitate language development, to work with speakers of such language communities in translating portions of the Bible into their languages.
The determination of what characteristics define a single language depends upon sociolinguistic evaluation by various scholars. Ethnologue follows general linguistic criteria, which are based on mutual intelligibility. Shared language intelligibility features are complex, include etymological and grammatical evidence, agreed upon by experts. In addition to choosing a primary name for a language, Ethnologue provides listings of other name for the language and any dialects that are used by its speakers, government and neighbors. Included are any names that have been referenced regardless of whether a name is considered official, politically correct or offensive; these lists of names are not complete. In 1984, Ethnologue released a three-letter coding system, called an'SIL code', to identify each language that it described; this set of codes exceeded the scope of other standards, e.g. ISO 639-1 and ISO 639-2; the 14th edition, published in 2000, included 7,148 language codes. In 2002, Ethnologue was asked to work with the International Organization for Standardization to integrate its codes into a draft international standard.
The 15th edition of Ethnologue was the first edition to use this standard, called ISO 639-3. This standard is now administered separately from Ethnologue. In only one case and the ISO standards treat languages differently. ISO 639-3 considers Akan to be a macrolanguage consisting of two distinct languages and Fante, whereas Ethnologue considers Twi and Fante to be dialects of a single language, since they are mutually intelligible; this anomaly resulted because the ISO 639-2 standard has separate codes for Twi and Fante, which have separate literary traditions, all 639-2 codes for individual languages are automatically part of 639–3 though 639-3 would not assign them separate codes. In 2014, with the 17th edition, Ethnologue introduced a numerical code for language status using a framework called EGIDS, an elaboration of Fishman's GIDS, it ranks a language from 0 for an international language to 10 for an extinct language, i.e. a language with which no-one retains a sense of ethnic identity.
In December 2015, Ethnologue launched a metered paywall. As of 2017, Ethnologue's 20th edition described 237 language families including 86 language isolates and six typological categories, namely sign languages, pidgins, mixed languages, constructed languages, as yet unclassified languages. In 1986, William Bright editor of the journal Language, wrote of Ethnologue that it "is indispensable for any reference shelf on the languages of the world". In 2008 in the same journal, Lyle Campbell and Verónica Grondona said: "Ethnologue...has become the standard reference, its usefulness is hard to overestimate."In 2015, Harald Hammarström, an editor of Glottolog, criticized the publication for lacking citations and failing to articulate clear principles of language classification and identification. However, he concluded that, on balance, "Ethnologue is an impressively comprehensive catalogue of world languages, it is far superior to anything else produced prior to 2009." Starting with the 17th edition, Ethnologue has been published every year.
Linguasphere Observatory Register Lists of languages List of language families Martin Everaert. The Use of Databases in Cross-Linguistic Studies. Walter de Gruyter. ISBN 9783110198744. Retrieved 2014-07-13. Skutnabb-Kangas, Tove. Linguistic Genocide in Education-or Worldwide Diversity and Human Rights?. Routledge. ISBN 9781135662356. Retrieved 2014-07-13. Paolillo, John C.. "Evaluating language statistics: the Ethnologue and beyond". UNESCO Institute of Statistics. Pp. 3–5. Retrieved October 8, 2015. Web version of Ethnologue
Cameroon the Republic of Cameroon, is a country in Central Africa. It is bordered by Nigeria to the north. Cameroon's coastline lies on the Bight of part of the Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic Ocean. Although Cameroon is not an ECOWAS member state, it is geographically and in West Africa with the Southern Cameroons which now form her Northwest and Southwest Regions having a strong West African history; the country is sometimes identified as West African and other times as Central African due to its strategic position at the crossroads between West and Central Africa. French and English are the official languages of Cameroon; the country is referred to as "Africa in miniature" for its geological and cultural diversity. Natural features include beaches, mountains and savannas; the highest point at 4,100 metres is Mount Cameroon in the Southwest Region of the country, the largest cities in population-terms are Douala on the Wouri river, its economic capital and main seaport, Yaoundé, its political capital, Garoua.
The country is well known for its native styles of music makossa and bikutsi, for its successful national football team. Early inhabitants of the territory included the Sao civilisation around Lake Chad and the Baka hunter-gatherers in the southeastern rainforest. Portuguese explorers reached the coast in the 15th century and named the area Rio dos Camarões, which became Cameroon in English. Fulani soldiers founded the Adamawa Emirate in the north in the 19th century, various ethnic groups of the west and northwest established powerful chiefdoms and fondoms. Cameroon became a German colony in 1884 known as Kamerun. After World War I, the territory was divided between France and the United Kingdom as League of Nations mandates; the Union des Populations du Cameroun political party advocated independence, but was outlawed by France in the 1950s, leading to the Bamileke War fought between French and UPC militant forces until early 1971. In 1960, the French-administered part of Cameroon became independent as the Republic of Cameroun under President Ahmadou Ahidjo.
The southern part of British Cameroons federated with it in 1961 to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon. The federation was abandoned in 1972; the country was renamed the United Republic of Cameroon in 1972 and the Republic of Cameroon in 1984. Large numbers of Cameroonians live as subsistence farmers. Since 1982 Paul Biya has been President, governing with his Cameroon People's Democratic Movement party; the country has experienced tensions coming from the English-speaking territories. Politicians in the English-speaking regions have advocated for greater decentralisation and complete separation or independence from Cameroon. In 2017, tensions in the English-speaking territories escalated into open warfare; the territory of present-day Cameroon was first settled during the Neolithic Era. The longest continuous inhabitants are groups such as the Baka. From here, Bantu migrations into eastern and central Africa are believed to have originated about 2,000 years ago; the Sao culture arose around Lake Chad, c. 500 AD, gave way to the Kanem and its successor state, the Bornu Empire.
Kingdoms and chiefdoms arose in the west. Portuguese sailors reached the coast in 1472, they noted an abundance of the ghost shrimp Lepidophthalmus turneranus in the Wouri River and named it Rio dos Camarões, which became Cameroon in English. Over the following few centuries, European interests regularised trade with the coastal peoples, Christian missionaries pushed inland. In the early 19th century, Modibo Adama led Fulani soldiers on a jihad in the north against non-Muslim and Muslim peoples and established the Adamawa Emirate. Settled peoples who fled the Fulani caused a major redistribution of population; the Bamum tribe have a writing system, known as Shu Mom. The script was given to them by Sultan Ibrahim Njoya in 1896, is taught in Cameroon by the Bamum Scripts and Archives Project. Germany began to establish roots in Cameroon in 1868 when the Woermann Company of Hamburg built a warehouse, it was built on the estuary of the Wouri River. Gustav Nachtigal made a treaty with one of the local kings to annex the region for the German emperor.
The German Empire claimed the territory as the colony of Kamerun in 1884 and began a steady push inland. The Germans ran into resistance with the native people who did not want the Germans to establish themselves on this land. Under the influence of Germany, commercial companies were left to regulate local administrations; these concessions used forced labour of the Africans to make a profit. The labour was used on banana, palm oil, cocoa plantations, they initiated projects to improve the colony's infrastructure, relying on a harsh system of forced labour, much criticised by the other colonial powers. With the defeat of Germany in World War I, Kamerun became a League of Nations mandate territory and was split into French Cameroons and British Cameroons in 1919. France integrated the economy of Cameroon with that of France and improved the infrastructure with capital investments and skilled workers, modifying the system of forced labour; the British administered their territory from neighbouring Nigeria.
Natives complained that this made them a neglected "colony of a colony". Nigerian migrant workers flocked to Southern Cameroons, ending forced labour altogether but angering the local natives, who felt swamped. T