Romania-Southern Africa connection: a look into 1970´s relations

The external policy led by Ceausescu’s regime, starting with the 1960, assertive in willing to promote itself as an independent state, and not as a satellite of the URSS, places in a favorable light the relations with the new-formed states in Southern Africa and Asia. Therefore, between 1968 and his first official Africa tour, in 1979, Ceausescu receives in Bucharest the leaders of the main liberation movements from Angola (MPLA-Agostinho Neto), Mozambique (FRELIMO-Samora Machel), Guinea-Bissau and Cape-Vert (PAIGC-Amilcar Cabral). At the same time, he also receives in 1979 Sam Nujoma (SWAPO), Robert Mugabe and Edgar Tekere (ZANU), and Joshua Nkomo (ZAPU). His obsession with the world peace, long expressed since the conflict in Czechoslovakia, determines him to credit a number of African and Asian countries, among which also Mozambique that in 1989 had to pay back to Romania an external debt of 126 million dollars. In 2007, 90% of this debt is erased. Therefore, based on archival research and interviews, this paper intends to look into the relations that characterized the external policy of Ceausescu´s regime with the Southern African countries in the context of the Cold War, its transnational linkages and international actors, that shaped the present relations.


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