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Apartheid was a policy of racial segregation in South Africa.
The policy of Apartheid beganin 1948 when the Afrikaner-led Nationalist Party dominated South African politics.
Afrikaners were descendants of Dutch immigrants to South Africa. The first Dutch settlement in South Africa was established in 1652.
But British imperialism eventually led to Britishcontrol of South Africa.
The British and the Boers or Afrikaners, descendants of the original Dutch settlers, fought several bloody wars.
Especially, after diamondshad been found in South African soil.
Of course, the British imperialists won given the size and wealth of the British empire.
But regardless of the victor, the indigenous people of South Africa were still denied their land and resources.
When the British imperialistsfinally left South Africa, the Afrikaners came to dominate the South African government.
The National Party was the Party of the Afrikaners and it was this party that enacted Apartheid or “apartness” laws.
Under this brutal system of segregation, black South Africans were denied access to white schools, white beaches, white neighborhoods, and even white-only benches.
Under the Population Registration Act of 1950, all South Africans were required to be racially classified as white, black, or colored.
In addition, all black SouthAfricans were required to carry pass books containing fingerprints, identification information, a photograph, and whether the individual had access to white neighborhoods.
Of course, many individuals resisted the apartheid system.
But those who resisted faced imprisonment, exile, torture, and even death. Stephen Biko was murdered by the South African police in 1977.
The African National Congress(ANC) was a Black Nationalist organization founded long before apartheid. But it led the valiant struggle against apartheid.
Nelson Mandela emerged as a leader of the military wing of the ANC in the early 1960s.
was imprisoned for treason and sentenced to life in prison.In 1964, Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for treason and sentenced to life in prison.
But even with their leaders imprisoned on Robben Island, the fight against apartheid continued.
Mandela became a symbolof the injustice of the apartheid system.
Finally, after twenty-seven years in prison, the Afrikaner government released Mandela from prison.
President of South Africa, shared the Nobel Peace Prize.In 1993, Nelson Mandela and F.W. de Klerk, the President of South Africa, shared the Nobel Peace Prize.
With the end of apartheid and free elections for all, Nelson Mandela was elected South African President in 1994.
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