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Our World: http://www.isdom.com/lesotho.htm
World History KLMA: www.stabi.hs-bremerhaven.de/gbs2/whkmla/
Lesotho is a small country the size of
Switzerland and is completely surrounded by South Africa. The
Basotho tribe is the dominant group and the population is about 2
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)(WSJ, 3/25/98, p.A1)
in was founded by the Basotho chieftain Moshoeshoe on a natural rock
fortress called Mountain of the Night.
(WSJ, 3/25/98, p.A11)
1835-1868 Lesotho acted as a buffer between the
Afrikaner’s and British colonial interests and supplied seasonal
farm workers to both.
(WSJ, 3/25/98, p.A11)(EWH, 4th ed, p.885)
1868 Lesotho was annexed by the
(WSJ, 3/25/98, p.A11)
1943 May 1, British India SN
Company troop transport in convoy with 23 merchantmen and escorted
by eleven destroyers, was bound for Malta. When some 30 miles north
of Benghazi, the convoy was attacked by German bombers and torpedo
carrying aircraft. On board the Erinpura (Capt. P.V. Cotter) were
1,025 troops. One large bomb exploded in the hold sinking the ship
in a matter of minutes. Forty four crewmembers, three gunners and an
unspecified number of troops were lost. On the same day, near the
Tunisian coast, another troopship (name unknown) was torpedoed and
sank. On board were a number of troops from Basutoland (later
Lesotho) who were serving with the British Eighth Army. In this
tragic sinking, 618 Basutos lost their lives.
1963 Moshoeshoe II was crowned
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1966 Lesotho gained
independence from Britain.
(SFC, 7/1/97, p.A9)
1980 Apr 1, The southern
African Development Coordination Conference (SADCC) was established
by 9 countries with the Lusaka declaration (Angola, Botswana,
Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe).
The main aim was coordinating development projects in order to
lessen economic dependence on apartheid South Africa. On
August 17, 1992, it was transformed into the Southern African
Development Community (SADC). By 2008 it included 15 members.
1985 In South Africa 2 ANC
activists and 8 others were killed in a raid into Lesotho. A
government assassin told a court in 1996 that plans for the raid
were approved by the highest levels of Pres. Botha’s apartheid
(WSJ, 9/17/96, p.A1)
1986 A project began in Lesotho
to divert freshwater from the mountains for electricity and for sale
to South Africa. The project was sponsored by the World Bank, the
European Investment Bank and the African Development Bank at a cost
of $3.5 billion. The electricity proved too expensive for most
people and the water diversion wreaked environmental havoc
downstream. In 2003 the development fund raised from selling the
water was shut down. Courts convicted 3 of the world’s largest
construction firms on corruption charges.
(SFC, 12/21/07, p.A31)
1990 King Moshoeshoe II was
forced into exile after a series of 3 military coups ousted him from
the throne. His son Letsie assumed the throne.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1994 In Lesotho Letsie backed a
palace coup to reinstate his father as king. He ousted the first
government to be elected in a multiparty vote and temporarily
assumed the throne.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1995 Jan, In Lesotho Letsie
gave up the crown to his returned father.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1996 Moshoeshoe II, king of
Lesotho, was killed in an automobile accident.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1997 Feb, Lesotho soldiers put
down a police mutiny in Maseru after 2 hours of shooting.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1997 Jun, In Lesotho Protestors
in Maseru marched against the formation of a new ruling party by
Prime Minister Ntsu Mokhehle.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)
1997 Oct 31, Letsie III (34)
was crowned king of Lesotho, a figurehead position.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.14A)(SFC, 9/22/98, p.A7)
1997 In Lesotho Pakalitha
Mosisili defected from the Basutoland Congress Party under leader
Ntsu Mokhehle, to form the Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD)
1998 Sep 21, In Lesotho
opposition protestors clashed with South African and Botswanan
troops at the royal palace. A faction of the Lesotho army rebelled
11 days ago and deposed the new military leadership. They charged
that the May elections swept by the Lesotho Congress party were
(SFC, 9/22/98, p.A7)
1998 Sep 22, South African
troops poured over the border into Lesotho and 30 people were
(SFC, 9/23/98, p.A12)
1998 Sep 23, In Lesotho 9 South
Africans and 40 rebels were killed since the SADC (Southern African
Development Community) task force entered Lesotho to restore the
government of PM Pakalitha Mosisili. Maseru was virtually destroyed
by arson and looting that followed the military intervention.
Damages were estimated at $39 million.
(SFC, 9/24/98, p.A14)(SFC, 4/10/99, p.C14)
1998 Nov 30, Britain along with
Lesotho, Burkino Faso, the Ivory Coast and Tajikistan signed a
global treaty for an Int’l. Criminal Court to try war crimes. The
accord was approved in July at conference in Rome and 61 countries
had signed on. The court required 60 countries to pass legislation
(SFC, 12/1/98, p.A11)
1999 Apr 9, Prime Minister
Pakalitha Mosisili announced that South Africa and Botswana would
soon pull their forces out of Lesotho following a 7 month
(SFC, 4/10/99, p.C14)
1999 Dec 13, In Lesotho Val
Pringle (63), American entertainer, was stabbed to death while
confronting burglars at his home outside Maseru. Police later
arrested 2 men suspected in the murder.
(SFC, 12/21/99, p.C8)
2003 Sep 7, Mamohato Bereng
Seeiso (62), the queen mother of the tiny mountain kingdom of
Lesotho, died after collapsing in a church outside the capital.
2004 Jan 29, Widespread drought
was reported across southern Africa. Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa
and Zimbabwe were all affected.
(SFC, 1/29/04, p.A16)
2004 Jul 15, The Gates
Foundation announced a $44.7 million award at the AIDS Conference in
Bangkok to a consortium of TB and AIDS researchers. The 2 diseases
were often linked. A UN report cited 7 countries as the hardest hit
by the AIDS pandemic: Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Lesotho, Zambia, Malawi,
the Central African Republic and Mozambique.
(WSJ, 7/15/04, p.B1)(SFC, 7/16/04, p.A6)
2004 Chris Bradshaw visited
Lesotho and became inspired to found the African Library Project:
(SSFC, 7/9/06, p.D2)
2005 Mar 29, It was reported
that China’s influence in Africa was expanding rapidly. Chinese
projects included the rebuilding of Nigeria’s railroad network; the
paving of roads in Rwanda; ownership of copper mines in Zambia;
timber operations in Equatorial Guinea; and supermarket operations
(WSJ, 3/29/05, p.A1)
2005 Nov 24, The UN food agency
said the United States has thrown a lifeline to six southern African
countries, donating food aid valued at $45 million. The food will be
distributed across Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia
2006 Apr 28, Prince Harry,
third in line to the British throne, launched a charity in memory of
his late mother Princess Diana to help AIDS orphans in Lesotho.
2006 May 16, Irish rock star
Bono began a new African tour in Lesotho where he planned to unveil
a new initiative to fight AIDS in its ailing textile industry.
2006 Aug 18, In Lesotho a
14-nation southern Africa summit closed with a pledge to speed up
regional economical integration, even as leaders expressed concern
about crisis-plagued member-state Zimbabwe.
2006 Nov 24, In Lesotho
Samuella Jacobina Verwey (36), a Dutch aid worker with the Clinton
Foundation, was shot to death at the house of Mpho Malie, Lesotho's
trade and industry minister. Malie is seen as a major contender for
the leadership of the ruling Lesotho Congress for Democracy after
the current leader, PM Pakalitha Mosisili, quits.
2007 Feb 17, Lesotho held
elections. The ruling party, which has brought stability to the
mountain kingdom, faced a new rival set up on a platform of change.
2007 The population of Lesotho
stood at about 1.8 million and almost one of 4 adults had HIV/AIDS.
Lesotho’s textile industry, the only industry to speak of, employed
(Econ, 6/30/07, p.56)(Econ, 7/21/07, p.61)
2008 Jul 16, The United States
signed a pair of agreements to boost trade and investment ties with
countries in southern and eastern Africa. These included the Trade,
Investment and Development Cooperation Agreement with the Southern
Africa Customs Union (SACU), which includes Botswana, Lesotho,
Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland; and the Trade Investment and
Framework Agreement (TIFA) with the East African Community, which
includes Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.
2008 Sep 8, Miners in the
southern African kingdom of Lesotho found one of the world's largest
diamonds, a near-flawless white gem weighing nearly 500 carats.
2009 Apr 22, In Lesotho a
military-style offensive took place on the official residence of the
PM Pakalitha Mosisili. Two men were arrested shortly after the
shooting. 7 others were arrested across the border in South Africa
the day after the shooting. The 9 men were charged with 31 counts,
including murder and attempted murder in the attack.
2010 Sep 3, In Lesotho Thomas
Maresco (24), a US Peace Corps volunteer, was shot and killed in an
apparent robbery attempt.
2010 Lesotho, entirely
surrounded by South Africa, barely numbered 2 million people.
(Econ, 8/7/10, p.44)
2012 Feb 28, Lesotho PM
Pakalitha Mosisili resigned from the faction-riven ruling party that
he led in power since 1998 to join a new movement.
2012 May 19, Lesotho held early
voting, one week before the mostly hotly contested general elections
since the 1998 polls that degenerated into looting and sparked a
South African intervention. A full election was set for May 26.
2012 May 26, Lesotho's one
million voters went to the polls in a tight general election where
bitter personal rivalries among the three main party leaders have
overshadowed worries about jobs and poverty. More than half of the
nation's two million people lived in poverty. Final results showed
Mosisili's Democratic Congress (DC) winning 48 seats of 120 seats.
(AFP, 5/26/12)(AFP, 5/27/12)
2012 May 29, Lesotho opposition
parties agreed to unite to bring down veteran PM Pakalitha Mosisili,
whose party failed to win an absolute majority in the weekend
2012 May 30, Lesotho PM
Pakalitha Mosisili resigned after his party failed to win a majority
in parliamentary elections and the opposition united to oust him
after 14 years in power.
2012 Jun 7, Lesotho King Letsie
III appointed Motsoahae Tom Thabane as Prime Minister.
2012 Jun 8, Lesotho's new PM
Thomas Thabane (72) was sworn in after his coalition government
unseated former leader Pakalitha Mosisili in the kingdom's first
2012 The population of Lesotho,
completely surrounded by South Africa, was about 2 million.
2014 Aug 30, In Lesotho at
least one policeman was killed when the military disarmed police
stations. Radios were also jammed in what the PM Thomas Thabane said
was a clear coup attempt in the country of about 2 million people.
2014 Sep 3, Lesotho's embattled
PM Tom Thabane, who fled to South Africa at the weekend after an
apparent bid to oust him, returned safely to his home country.
2014 Sep 5, In Lesotho a top
military commander said Lt. General Tlali Kamol, suspected of
involvement in last week's attempted coup, has seized army weapons
in preparation for a possible stand-off.
2014 Oct 17, Lesotho's king
convened parliament for the first time since an alleged coup attempt
in August as the southern African country strives to resolve
political tensions before elections next year.
2015 Feb 28, Lesotho held an
early election aimed at overcoming tension among political factions
that has led to violence among security forces since last year.
2015 Mar 4, In Lesotho final
results in the Feb 28 snap elections showed the opposition
outdistancing PM Thomas Thabane's party, reversing early indications
that the ruling party was in the lead.
2015 May 19, Lesotho former PM
Thomas Thabane travelled to Botswana late today. On May 21 he
claimed that he was at risk of assassination after being voted out
2015 Jun 25, Former Lesotho
Defense Force commander Maaparankoe Mahao was shot dead by soldiers
in his village home. Mahao, an ally of Lesotho's former leader
Thomas Thabane, was a bitter rival of current army chief Tlali
2015 Sep 17, Lesotho police
arrested a 63-year-old Danish man after they found 21 pieces of
female genitalia in his freezer at his home in Bloemfontein.
2015 Oct 20, In Lesotho the
wife of a Danish man, who was caught in South Africa last month with
21 pieces of female genitalia in his freezer, was killed outside her
home in the Maseru. The wife was allegedly one of his victims.
2016 May 16, The International
Federation of Red Cross and the Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)
pledged $110 million to a new initiative to help drought-stricken
southern African countries including Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique,
Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.
2016 Jul 28, The UN Food and
Agriculture Organization (FAO) said some 23 million farmers in
drought-hit Southern Africa need urgent help to prepare for the next
planting season with only a few weeks left before it begins. It said
Botswana, Swaziland, South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe have
reported more than 640,000 drought-related livestock deaths. Farmers
and cattle herders in 10 countries have requested assistance:
Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa,
Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
2017 Mar 7, Lesotho's deputy
prime minister said the king has dissolved parliament and will
shortly set an election date, days after PM Pakalitha Mosisili lost
a confidence vote in the assembly.
2017 Jun 3, Lesotho voted in a
national election just two years after the previous one. PM
Pakalitha Mosisili, who had been in power since 2015, lost a
confidence vote in parliament in March after several defections by
ruling coalition lawmakers to the opposition eroded his support.
Thomas Thabane's All Basotho Convention party won the snap elections
but failed to get an outright majority, leading it to negotiate
joint rule with the Alliance of Democrats (AD), Basotho National
Party (BNP) and Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL).
(Reuters, 6/3/17)(AP, 6/15/17)
2017 Jun 14, In Lesotho
Lipolelo Thabane (58), the wife of incoming PM Thomas Thabane, was
shot dead in Ha Masana village, 35 km (22 miles) south of the
capital Maseru where she lived, as she was driving with a friend.
Thabane (77) remarried two months later. In 2020 police searched for
the first lady for questioning in the killing of Lipolelo.
(AP, 6/15/17)(SFC, 1/15/20, p.A2)
2017 Jun 16, Lesotho's new PM
Thomas Thabane (78) took office at the head of a coalition
government, three years after he was targeted by a putsch and two
days after the murder of his estranged wife.
2017 Jul 29, A Lesotho official
said authorities are investigating a security breach after
wire-tapping gadgets were discovered in the office of the new prime
minister earlier this week.
2017 Sep 5, Lesotho's army
commander Khoantle Mots'omots'o and two senior officers were shot
dead by rival officers at a military barracks, in an apparent
assassination set to revive instability in the African kingdom.
(AFP, 9/5/17)(Reuters, 9/5/17)
2017 Lesotho became the first
in Africa to issue a license for medical marijuana.
2017 The World Bank put Lesotho
jobless rate between 24 and 28 percent.
2018 Jan 31, It was reported
that low dam levels in the emerald-green highlands of Lesotho are
raising alarm bells in South Africa's industrial heartland around
Johannesburg, which has so far avoided the shortages hitting other
2018 Sep 7, It was reported
that two companies in the Lesotho's tiny capital Maseru are now
using one of the world's first commercial 5G networks on the
long-awaited 3.5 GHz spectrum.
2019 Jun 28, In Lesotho several
thousand farmers marched to parliament to protest against
regulations forcing them to sell their wool and mohair to a Chinese
2020 Jan 10, In Lesotho first
lady Maesaiah Thabane fled the country to escape arrest in
connection with the 2017 killing of PM Thomas Thabane's former wife,
Lipolelo. On Feb. 4 Maesaiah returned and handed herself over to
(SFC, 2/5/20, p.A2)
2020 Jan 10, The United Nations
said seven countries -- Lebanon, Yemen, Venezuela, Central African
Republic, Gambia, Lesotho and Tonga -- have fallen behind in their
financial contributions and would not be able to in the 74th session
of the General Assembly.
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Subject = Lesotho
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