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River and Cut Line (“Kaplyn”)

From west to east, the border between Angola and South-West Africa is firstly formed by the Kunene River, 310 kilometres from its mouth to Ruacana. From there a cut line runs directly east in a straight to the Cubango- or Kavango River for 426 kilometres, indicated by beacons numbered 1 to 47. In the border agreement signed between Portugal and the Union of South Africa on 22 June 1926, it is stipulated: “The whole of the boundary line shall be cleared and kept free of bush and trees.” (Noted in the Odendaal Report, “Verslag van Kommissie van Ondersoek na aangeleenthede van Suidwes-Afrika 1962-1963” (Report from the Commission of Enquiry on matters related to South-West Africa 1962-1963), RP No 12/1964, p. 413) Thus the cut line (“kaplyn”) came into existence. From there the Kavango (Cubango) River forms the border to Mucusso for another 348 kilometres. From Mucusso the border stretches in a straight line in an east-northeast direction until it reaches the border with Zambia at the Cuando River just south of Luiana, forming another cut line of 224 kilometres. The continued line forms the border between South-West Africa (the Caprivi-strip) and Zambia until it reaches the Zambezi River opposite Katima Mulilo, another 95 kilometres. Finally, the Zambezi River forms the border for another 113 kilometres to Kazungula, the point where four countries meet: South-West Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.


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Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET

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