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  About the Norwegian Council for Africa



The Norwegian Council for Africa (formerly the Norwegian Council for Southern Africa) has since 1967 spearheaded the Norwegian struggle against apartheid and for democracy and justice in Southern Africa.

The most important means towards this end has always been the spreading of information and knowledge in Norway. At the same time we have put pressure on Norwegian authorities and commercial companies, and we have supported grassroot movements in the region and worked with educational projects in Zimbabwe, Moambique, South-Africa, Namibia, Tanzania and Angola.

Today we witness that Africa is given less and less time on the political agenda and less and less attention in the media. We see that the covering of events and political development often leaves a lot to be desired and that it is often one-dimensional.

The countries in Southern Africa have liberated themselves one by one, and the apartheid-regime in South-Africa was overthrown in the multi-party elections in April 1994. This is why the Norwegian Council for Africa has shifted its view and expanded its field of interest to include all of Sub-Saharan Africa. This happens at a time when the marginalisation of Africa is on the increase; the continent receives less and less priority on the political agenda.

Today countries south of the Sahara face challenges similar in kind:

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The legacy from the colonial period has left deep wounds.
All are up to their necks in external debt.
The inhabitants in most of the countries have a life expectancy of less than 50 years.
The distribution of wealth is extremely uneven.
Several countries are threatened by civil war.
Poverty strains the natural resources and deforestation and desertification can make ecological and human disasters part of everyday life.

These are problems we can, and should, do something about. But solidarity-work has to be founded on knowledge and understanding.

Through its work, the Norwegian Council for Africa wants to contribute to:

* A proliferation of versatile information and knowledge about Africa
* Keeping Africa on the agenda in the Norwegian public opinion, among the politicians, the authorities and people involved in business and commerce.
* Putting pressure on Norwegian authorities to implement an active and solidaric policy towards Africa - both directly and through international channels
* Putting pressure on Norwegian business and commerce in order to attain a more just and ethically sound trade with countries on the continent.

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