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African National Congress

south mandela apartheid organization

African National Congress, black African organization devoted to the “creation of a united democratic South Africa” and the political empowerment of blacks. Founded in 1912 as the Native National Congress, the organization encouraged passive resistance to the “pass” laws and other instruments of apartheid. After an outbreak of violence, it was banned in 1961 by the government of South Africa. Its leader, Nelson Mandela, was sentenced to life imprisonment, but he was released Feb. 1990 and the ban was lifted. The ANC won the majority of the votes in the first democratic elections in South Africa in 1994.

See also: Apartheid; Mandela, Nelson; South Africa.

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