History of Senegal

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Map of Senegal

The history of Senegal begins with early cultures in the Paleolithic and Neolithic .

Around 500 AD, the Wolof and Serer, belonging to the Sudanid peoples , immigrated from the northeast into what is now Senegal. In the 9th century, Sudanese tukulor settled in the valley of the Senegal River .

Influence of Ghana and Mali (approx. 900 - 15th century)

The West Sudanese Ghana Empire expanded its territory around 900 from the upper Niger to the mouth of Senegal. The decline of the Ghana Empire began in the 11th century. Attacks by Berber peoples - including the Almoravids , who brought Islam to Senegal - weakened the empire. In 1240 it was conquered by the kingdom of Mali , which also took control of the small kingdoms in Senegal. With the fall of power of the Mali empire, these Wolof empires ( see e.g. Jolof , Waalo ) gained their independence for the first time in the 14th and 15th centuries.

Colonial period (1444-1960)

In 1444 the Portuguese set up their first trading post in Senegal. They were followed by the Dutch, French and British in the 16th century. The Wolof empires became important trading partners of the Europeans, especially in the field of the slave trade . The island of Gorée became an important trading center in the Atlantic slave trade . From the 17th century the French settled in Senegambia, expelled the Dutch in 1677 and took control of the coast. From 1758 to 1779, Senegal was occupied by Great Britain, who united it with their possessions on the Gambia to form the crown colony of Senegambia . After the Peace of Paris in 1783 and the British-French colonial conflict , France gradually regained sovereignty over Senegal by 1805. Senegal was reoccupied by Great Britain from 1815 to 1816 until France regained control in 1844. In 1857, African units of the colonial army, the so-called Tirailleurs sénégalais, were set up. In 1883, the residents of four coastal cities received French citizenship . In 1895 France declared Senegal a colony and Saint-Louis became the capital of French West Africa before being replaced by Dakar in 1902 . Around this time a close economic cooperation developed with the Muridiyya brotherhood of Amadou Bamba , who were active in peanut cultivation.

In 1914, the first African-born MPs were sent to the French National Assembly. On February 19, 1945, under the French colonial administration, a decree was passed stating that there was no difference between Senegalese and French women in terms of active and passive women's suffrage ; they are electoral and eligible for election under the same conditions. In 1956, still under French colonial rule, the loi-cadre Defferre was introduced, which guaranteed universal suffrage for adults.

France finally gave the country independence in two stages. In 1958 it was given extensive autonomy within the French Community, and in the following year it merged with Mali to form the Mali Federation . In the " African year " of 1960, Senegal, like almost all French colonies, became independent. Universal suffrage was confirmed.

Independence (after 1960)

Under the leadership of Léopold Sédar Senghor , a presidential republic was created based on the one-party rule of the Union Progressiste Sénégalaise (UPS). After a coup attempt by Prime Minister Mamadou Dia , Senghor was given increased powers through a constitutional amendment in 1963 and also took over the post of Prime Minister (until 1970). He reacted to mass demonstrations against his authoritarian regime in the 1970s with gradual democratization. In the first free elections in 1978, the ruling party, which had renamed itself Parti Socialiste Démocratique (psd), won over 80% of the vote. The liberal Parti Démocratique Sénégalais (PDS) entered parliament as an opposition.

On December 31, 1980, President Senghor, re-elected in 1963, 1968, 1973 and 1978, declared his constitutional resignation, which was unique in sub-Saharan Africa until then.

He was succeeded by his confidante Abdou Diouf , who had held the post of Prime Minister since 1971. Under his leadership, Senegal and Gambia united in political, economic and cultural areas in 1982 to form the Senegambia Confederation , which, however, broke up again in 1989.

Renewed unrest in the late 1980s, such as the Casamance conflict in the southern Casamance region , prompted Diouf to take further liberalization measures in the early 1990s. For example, he limited the president's term of office to two terms. There were border disputes with the northern neighboring state of Mauritania .

In the 1970s and 1980s, Senegal was also affected by the drought in the Sahel zone , albeit less severely than other countries. Until recently, the country has been affected by desertification and other economic problems, which have contributed to the fact that young men in particular seek their fortune in emigration to Europe.

In 1993 President Diouf was re-elected. The opposition accuses him of electoral fraud.

The assassination of the Vice President of the Constitutional Court, Babacar Sèye , on May 15, 1993 plunged the country into an internal political crisis.

After the devaluation of the CFA franc , unrest broke out in January 1994. There are rioting with fatalities in Dakar. As a result, there are mass arrests and charges against opposition politicians.

In 1995, Prime Minister Habib Thiam formed a new cabinet with the participation of the opposition party Parti Démocratique Sénégalais (PDS).

In August 1997, the escalation of the Casamance conflict resulted in hundreds of deaths among rebels, civilians and soldiers.

After the ruling coalition broke up in March 2001, the “party alliance for change” led by Abdoulaye Wade and led by 40 parties wins 89 out of 120 seats in the parliamentary elections on April 29, 2001. The Party of Moustapha Niasse , the Alliance des Forces du Progrès (AFP) gets 11 seats. The Parti Socialiste (PS) Abdou Diouf, who had been the strongest force in Parliament, reached only 10 seats. The government is formed under Prime Minister Madior Boye (PDS).

On November 7, 2002, Idrissa Seck (PDS) becomes Prime Minister . The cabinet is newly formed with 4 ministers of state and 27 ministers. After the cabinet reshuffle on August 27, 2003, Seck remains Prime Minister with 34 ministers.

On April 21, 2004, Macky Sall (PDS) becomes Prime Minister .

In the presidential elections on February 25, 2007 incumbent Abdoulaye Wade will run again and will be re-elected in the first ballot. Cheikh Hadjibou Soumaré (PDS) becomes Prime Minister on June 19, 2007 .

See also

Web links

Commons : History of Senegal  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. - New Parline: the IPU's Open Data Platform (beta). In: data.ipu.org. February 19, 1945, accessed October 6, 2018 .
  2. ^ Mart Martin: The Almanac of Women and Minorities in World Politics. Westview Press Boulder, Colorado, 2000, p. 335.
  3. June Hannam, Mitzi Auchterlonie, Katherine Holden: International Encyclopedia of Women's Suffrage. ABC-Clio, Santa Barbara, Denver, Oxford 2000, ISBN 1-57607-064-6 , p. 9.