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Sao Tome joins African nations in seeking compensation from former colonizers

Prime Minister of Sao Tome and Principe Patrice Emery Trovoada addresses the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023, at U.N. headquarte   -  
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São Tomé and Príncipe

Sao Tome said Wednesday it would demand compensation from Portugal for damage caused by colonialism.

Last week, Portugal’s president said late on Tuesday (Apr. 23) that his country was responsible for crimes committed during the transatlantic slave trade and the colonial era, and suggested there was a need for reparations.

Portugal's colonial legacy in Africa, including Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, and Mozambique, was marked by violence, dispossession, and cultural destruction. Now, Sao Tome plans to seek compensation for the damage caused by colonialism.

This move reflects a broader trend of African nations asserting themselves against their former colonizers. In 2021, Germany agreed to pay Namibia 1.1 billion euros for the genocide it perpetrated there.

Similarly, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), there are calls for reparations from Belgium for colonial atrocities. This growing boldness signals a shifting dynamic in post-colonial relations, as African countries demand acknowledgment and restitution for the injustices of the past.

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