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South Africa: Tough times for 'forgotten' Angolan soldiers

South Africa: Tough times for 'forgotten' Angolan soldiers

Egypt

Angolan soldiers who fought under the apartheid regime seem to have been forgotten after fighting the war.

Close to 3000 of them live in Pomfret, a town in a far flung northern corner of South Africa.

Among them is 69 year old Jose Lourenco from Angola who fought enemies of the apartheid regime.

“If we go back to Angola they will tell us we killed them. You fought against your country go back to South Africa.You are enemies, go back to South Africa. But here in South Africa we are told you are enemies please go back to Angola,” he said.

Others do not see the need to live South Africa where they can now identify with the history and culture of people. They just want better living conditions.

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“I love this place. It is where I grew up. Our father’s history is also in this place we don’t wanna move. Our father’s history is also in this place. We just need electricity.”

The soldiers were relocated to the town when the cold war ended but the battalion was disbanded in 1993 – a year before the African National Congress (ANC) took power in South Africa. Many of them went home with about 30.000 euros.

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