African Countries

  1. UNESCO Sites and Ethiopia
    1. Aksum
      1. Location
      2. Trade
    2. Fasil Ghebbi
    3. The lower valley of Omo
    4. The lower Awash valley
    5. Tiya
  2. Startups
  3. South Africa
    1. Introduction
    2. Demographics
    3. Political Past
    4. Economics

UNESCO Sites and Ethiopia

Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a landlocked country in the Horn of Africa. It is home to 9 UNESCO sites. The national capital and largest city are Addis Ababa.

The nine UNESCO sites in Ethiopia

  • Aksum (1980)
  • Fasil Ghebbi, Gondar Region (1979)
  • Harar Jugol, the Fortified Historic Town (2006)
  • Konso Cultural Landscape (2011)
  • Lower Valley of the Awash (1980)
  • Lower Valley of the Omo (1980)
  • Rock-Hewn Churches, Lalibela (1978)
  • Tiya (1980)

Aksum

The ruins of the ancient city of Aksum are found close to Ethiopia’s northern border. They mark the location of the heart of ancient Ethiopia when the Kingdom of Aksum was the most powerful state between the Eastern Roman Empire and Persia. The massive ruins, dating from between the 1st and the 13th century A.D., include monolithic obelisks, royal tombs, and the ruins of ancient castles.

Location

The Kingdom of Aksum was located along the southern coast of the Red Sea. While most of the empire was west of the Red Sea in the Horn of Africa, at times Aksum also held portions of the Arabian Peninsula to the east of the Red Sea. The kingdom covered much of northern Ethiopia, Sudan, Yemen, and southern Saudi Arabia.

Trade

Aksum was perfectly located to become a major center of trade. Aksum had access to several different trade routes including major waterways such as the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, and the Nile River.

Fasil Ghebbi

In the 16th and 17th centuries, the fortress city of Fasil Ghebbi was the residence of the Ethiopian emperor Fasilides and his successors. Surrounded by a 900-m-long wall, the city contains palaces, churches, monasteries, and unique public and private buildings marked by Hindu and Arab influences

Also known as the Royal Enclosure, Fasil Ghebbi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was built by Emperor Fasiladas who, after growing bored with the migratory semi-nomadic lifestyle of his predecessors, decided to make a statement by building a grandiose palace complex – one of the most magnificent structures of its time.

The lower valley of Omo

The Lower Valley of the Omo is in southwestern Ethiopia. It extends over an area of 165 sq km. The age-old sedimentary deposits in the Lower Omo Valley are now world renowned for the discovery of many human ape fossils, that have been of fundamental importance in the study of human evolution.

The lower Awash valley

The Lower Awash Valley paleo-anthropological site is located 300 km northeast of Addis Ababa, in the west of the Afar Depression. It covers an area of around 150 sq km. The Awash Valley contains one of the most important groupings of paleontological sites on the African continent.

Tiya

Tiya is among the most important of the roughly 160 archaeological sites discovered so far in the Soddo region, south of Addis Ababa. The site contains 36 monuments. They are the remains of an ancient Ethiopian culture whose age has not yet been precisely determined

Startups

The country with the most start ups and most technically advanced in Africa is the republic of south Africa. The republic of south Africa has 349 start-up companies.

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South Africa

Introduction

South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa, is located at the southernmost tip of Africa. It is bounded to the south by 2,798 kilometers of coastline that stretch along the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans; to the north by the neighboring countries of Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe and to the east and northeast by Mozambique and Eswatini and it surrounds the enclaved country of Lesotho.

Demographics

It is the most populous country located entirely south of the equator. South Africa is a biodiversity hotspot, with unique biomes, and plant and animal life. With over 60 million people, the country is the world’s 23rd-most populous nation and covers an area of 1,221,037 square kilometers.

About 80% of the population are Black South Africans. The remaining population consists of Africa’s largest communities of European (White South Africans), Asian (Indian South Africans and Chinese South Africans), and multiracial (Coloured South Africans) ancestry.

South Africa is a multiethnic society encompassing a wide variety of cultures, languages, and religions. Its pluralistic makeup is reflected in the constitution’s recognition of 11 official languages, the fourth-highest number in the world.

According to the 2011 census, the two most spoken first languages are Zulu (22.7%) and Xhosa (16.0%). The two next ones are of European origin: Afrikaans (13.5%) developed from Dutch and serves as the first language of most Coloured and White South Africans; English (9.6%) reflects the legacy of British colonialism and is commonly used in public and commercial life.

Political Past

In 1487, the Portuguese explorer Bartolomeu Dias led the first European voyage to land in southern Africa. On 4 December, he landed at WalfischBay (now known as Walvis Bay in present-day Namibia). This was south of the furthest point reached in 1485 by his predecessor, the Portuguese navigator DiogoCão(Cape Cross, north of the bay).

By the early 17th century, Portugal’s maritime power was starting to decline, and English and Dutch merchants competed to oust Portugal from its lucrative monopoly on the spice trade. Representatives of the British East India Company sporadically called at the cape in search of provisions as early as 1601 but later came to favor Ascension Island and Saint Helena as alternative ports of refuge.

Dutch interest was aroused after 1647 when two employees of the Dutch East India Company were shipwrecked at the cape for several months. The sailors were able to survive by obtaining fresh water and meat from the natives. They also sowed vegetables in the fertile soil. Upon their return to Holland, they reported favorably on the cape’s potential as a “warehouse and garden” for provisions to stock passing ships for long voyages.

Great Britain occupied Cape Town between 1795 and 1803 to prevent it from falling under the control of the French. After briefly returning to Dutch rule, the cape was occupied again by the British. It became an integral part of the British Empire. British emigration to South Africa began around 1818.

The country is one of the few in Africa never to have had a coup d’état, and regular elections have been held for almost a century. However, the vast majority of Black South Africans were not enfranchised until 1994. During the 20th century, the black majority sought to claim more rights from the dominant white minority, which played a large role in the country’s recent history and politics. The National Party imposed apartheid in 1948, institutionalizing previous racial segregation.

After a long and sometimes violent struggle by the African National Congress and other anti-apartheid activists both inside and outside the country, the repeal of discriminatory laws began in the mid-1980s. Since 1994, all ethnic and linguistic groups have held political representation in the country’s liberal democracy. South Africa is often referred to as the “rainbow nation” to describe the country’s multicultural diversity, especially in the wake of apartheid.

South Africa has three capital cities, with the executive, judicial and legislative branches of government based in Pretoria, Bloemfontein, and Cape Town respectively.

South Africa is a middle power in international affairs; it maintains regional influence and is a member of both the Commonwealth of Nations and the G20. It is a developing country, ranking 114th on the Human Development Index.

Economics

It has been classified by the World Bank as a newly industrialized country, it has the third-largest economy in Africa and the most industrialized, technologically advanced economy in Africa overall, and the 33rd-largest in the world

South Africa has the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Africa. Since the end of apartheid, government accountability and quality of life have improved; however, crime, poverty, and inequality remain widespread, with about a quarter of the population has been unemployed and living on less than US$1.25 per day in 2008.