Portal:Zimbabwe

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Zimbabwe (/zɪmˈbɑːbw/ zim-BAHB-way; officially the Republic of Zimbabwe) is a landlocked country of southern Africa. It shares a 125-mile (200-kilometre) border on the south with the Republic of South Africa and is bounded on the southwest and west by Botswana, on the north by Zambia, and on the northeast and east by Mozambique. The capital is Harare (renamed from Salisbury in 1982). Zimbabwe achieved recognised independence from Britain in April 1980, following a 14-year period as an unrecognised state under the predominantly white minority government of Rhodesia, which unilaterally declared independence in 1965. Rhodesia briefly reconstituted itself as black-majority ruled Zimbabwe Rhodesia in 1979, but this order failed to gain international acceptance.

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Zimbabwe has three official languages: English, Shona and Ndebele. The country today equivalent to Zimbabwe was first demarcated by the British South Africa Company in the late 19th century; it became the self-governing colony of Southern Rhodesia in 1923. President Robert Mugabe is the head of State and Commander in Chief of the armed forces. Morgan Tsvangirai is the Prime Minister. Mugabe has been in power since the country's internationally recognised independence in 1980. Under his leadership the economy of Zimbabwe has declined from one of the strongest in Africa to the weakest.

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Zimbabwe held a presidential election along with a parliamentary election on March 29, 2008. The three major candidates were incumbent President Robert Mugabe of the Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF), Morgan Tsvangirai of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and Simba Makoni, an independent. The election was expected, because of Zimbabwe's dire economic situation, to provide President Mugabe with his toughest electoral challenge to date. Mugabe's opponents have been critical of the handling of the electoral process, and the government has been accused of planning to rig the election; Human Rights Watch said that the election was likely to be "deeply flawed". However, after the election took place, Jose Marcos Barrica, the head of the Southern African Development Community observer mission, described the election as "a peaceful and credible expression of the will of the people of Zimbabwe."

No official results were announced for more than a month after the election. The failure to release results was strongly criticized by the MDC, which sought an order from the High Court that would force their release. An independent projection placed Tsvangirai in the lead, but without the majority needed to avoid a second round.

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The flag of Zimbabwe was adopted on April 18, 1980. The soapstone bird featured on the flag represents a statuette of a bird found at the ruins of Great Zimbabwe. The bird symbolizes the history of Zimbabwe; the red star beneath it symbolizes the revolutionary struggle for liberation and peace.

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Frederick Selous

Frederick Courteney Selous (or Courtney) (31 December 1851 - 4 January 1917) was a British explorer, hunter, and conservationist famous for his exploits in Southern Africa. His real-life adventures inspired Sir H. Rider Haggard to create the fictional Allan Quatermain character. Selous was also a good friend of Theodore Roosevelt and Frederick Russell Burnham. He was the older brother of ornithologist and writer Edmund Selous.

Selous was born in London, and was educated at Rugby and in Germany. His love for natural history led to the resolve to study the ways of wild animals in their native haunts. Going to South Africa when he was nineteen, he travelled from the Cape of Good Hope to Matabeleland, reached early in 1872, and was granted permission by Lobengula to shoot game anywhere in his dominions.

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