This video is part of a series of 14 animated maps.

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Accelerated decolonization after 1945

This map is part of a series of 14 animated maps showing the history of Decolonization after 1945.

After World War II, the colonial powers faced opposition in a growing number of their territories. The two main victors in the war, the United States of America and the USSR, were hostile to colonization. Meanwhile, with the arrival of newly emancipated countries, the United Nations became a forum for the anti-colonial movement.

 As a result, a succession of countries quickly obtained their independence.

 The first wave took place mainly in Asia during the period 1945-1955.

 In the Far East, Japan’s defeat led to a withdrawal from all the territories it had occupied before the war: Korea, Taiwan and China.

 In 1946, the United States set an example for its allies by ending its administration of the Philippines, acquired as a result of the Spanish-American War in 1898.

 Gradually in the years that followed, the United Kingdom and Netherlands gave up most of their Asian possessions, with France following in their footsteps.

 In certain Middle Eastern countries, mandates conferred by the League of Nations were terminated:

- Lebanon and Syria were released from French colonial government,

- Palestine and Transjordan were no longer administered by the United Kingdom.

 During this ten-year period, Italian-held Libya also obtained its independence.

 The second wave took place in Africa during the ten years between 1956 and 1966.

 This decade saw independence granted to:

- all the British-held African territories;

- almost all France’s possessions in North Africa and the Sub-Saharan regions;

- the Belgian colonies;

- and Italy’s Somalia.

 During this same period, the Asian colonies of Malaysia and Northern Borneo also became independent.

 As did the Mediterranean islands of Cyprus and Malta.

The next wave of decolonization began in 1966:

In Africa:

- the Portuguese colonies of Mozambique and Angola,

-Spain’s last territories;

- Namibia;

- and Djibouti.

In the Middle East, the last British territories on the Arab peninsula: the Gulf Emirates, Oman, Aden.

In the Far East, Australia ended its protectorate for Papua New Guinea, and Portugal withdrew from East Timor.

On the American continents, both British and Dutch Guyana and Belize

During this period, numerous islands and archipelagos also successfully negotiated their independence, including New Hebrides, Mauritius, the Seychelles, Comoros, but not Mayotte, which remained a French overseas department.