Last Updated: Friday, 27 May 2016, 08:49 GMT

State of the World's Minorities 2006 - Angola: Cabindans

Publisher Minority Rights Group International
Publication Date 22 December 2005
Cite as Minority Rights Group International, State of the World's Minorities 2006 - Angola: Cabindans, 22 December 2005, available at: [accessed 28 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Cabindans are concentrated in Cabinda Province, which is separated from the rest of Angola by a strip of land belonging to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). A separatist movement for independence for Cabinda has been in existence since 1961, and Front for the Liberation of Cabinda (FLEC) was formed in 1963. Despite huge oil reserves, Cabinda itself is very poor and has little economic development. Cabindans feel exploited by the central government and foreign oil companies. Conflict continues between separatist fighters and the government and large numbers of government troops continue to be stationed in the province.

On 27 February 2005 a rally took place pressing for self-rule. It was attended by several tens of thousands of Cabindans and coincided with the 120th anniversary of the treaty of Simulabuco that brought Cabinda under Portuguese rule in 1885. Though many refugees have returned to Angola following the end of the civil war with Unita, some Cabindan separatist movements have refused to end the armed struggle and many refugees consider the situation too insecure to return from DRC and Congo (Brazzaville).

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