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Angolan Civil War :

The Angolan Civil War (1975-2002) was the longest conflict in Africa and one of the longest conditioned by the context of the Cold War . He fought as an escalation of the War of Independence of Angola, 1961-1974 , which pitted several Angolan movements antagonists , and their respective allies , but immediately turned the process of decolonization , 1974-1975 , which sharpened and amplified this conflict.

The conflict in Angola MPLA government faced and its allies Cuba and SWAPO , which fought for the independence of Namibia, against UNITA , the FNLA , South Africa and Zaire. The first received support from advisers and Soviet material and the second material advisers and the United States , China , as well as Western mercenaries , later after the fall of apartheid many ex - combatants South Africans were hired by the Angolan government as mercenaries.

The contest began with the rejection of the FNLA and UNITA to share power with the MPLA , but was perpetuated by the international support to each of the sides , and returned by the denial of Jonas Savimbi to accept the election results of 1992 . The war ended only after his death , leaving at least 3,500 dead, four million refugees and 100,000 maimed , especially by landmines .

UNITA resumed the war unilaterally :

On May 31, 1991 , with the mediation of Portugal, the United States, the Soviet Union and the United Nations, agreements were signed Estoril , according to Carlos Caranci seemed the end of the civil war and the arrival of democracy.

Congressmen and presidential elections of September 1992 were won on the MPLA in both , as in the presidential , was required majority in the first round, a second round was constitutionally required . This was not carried out , because the UNITA did not recognize the election results, despite European observers consider a success and remarkably clean. Immediately UNITA resumed the conflict , first in Luanda , and quickly in the remaining territory . In Luanda between October 30 and November 1 of that year , UNITA launched an offensive that but failed , over 10,000 civilians killed . In the rest of the country, especially Cabinda , the death toll reached 10 or 15 thousand . Kuito City during that year also was besieged , killing 50,000 people ( 70,000 inhabitants) , earning the nickname of " African Stalingrad " . This offense is considered by many analysts as the beginning of the decline of UNITA as a fighting force , until November of that year in the battle just street by street to take Luanda rebels lost 15,000 men , including most its officers .

At that time began hiring South African mercenaries ( former members of the SADF ), mainly by the Angolan government in 1992 Gulf oil companies Chevron and Sonangol were the first to use their services. Members of the private security firm Executive Outcomes ( EO ) launched attacks against UNITA bases threatening the company's facilities in Soyo supported by Angolan troops , and achieved great success . Between 1993 and 1994 , after the failure of the peace process , were recruited between 500-4000 EO mercenaries , probably about 2000 , which is dedicated to train 4,000 or 5,000 special forces members Angolan and 30 pilots.

In 1993 , a resolution of the Security Council of the United Nations embargoed arms transfers and fuel to UNITA , which forced Savimbi to negotiate a new agreement. In January, lived a burst of ethnic violence when 4-6000 Congolese and ovimbundus were killed in various cities. In February besieged UNITA Huambo , a city in the heart of their territory and strategic importance , killing 10,000 to 15,000 people , the city fell after 55 days of siege on March 6 . The city, which was defended by 15,000 government soldiers destroyed (mainly by the bombing ) and looted , some 80,000 people fled the city becoming refugees .

UNITA first established his capital in central highlands with headquarters in Huambo (formerly Nova Lisboa ) , east and north of the diamondiferous . From there proposed to divide the country into two , which is not so far fetched , being Angola an artificial country created by colonialism , but the proposal was not accepted .

In November 1994 , ended the Lusaka , Zambia , between UNITA and the government of Angola ( MPLA ) . UNITA used the peace agreement in Lusaka to prevent further territorial losses and fortify its military forces. Savimbi said dissatisfaction with the conditions and started the war again . The reason for this return to a conflict that seemed increasingly interminable , according Caranci , Savimbi was the inability to live within a country at peace . There were massive defections and changes sides , undermining the troops available to the guerrilla leader . That year only 9,000 of his men were demobilized . Unable to end the conflict and rising violence UN slowly began their retreat , decreasing progressively peacekeepers in Angola , from 7,000 in 199541 just passed 4,220 in 1997 .

Also between 1996 and 1997 the government acquired large quantities of arms and fuel in order to face a major military escalation , and then began to receive support from the West , with the recognition of the United States included, that with this fact, a trend clearly marked continuous in the conflict : the international ignorance and steady decline in the support of political and military actions of UNITA.


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