Aurora Almada e Santos, researcher at the Instituto de História Contemporânea of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa in Portugal, presents the talk “The United Nations Visiting Missions to Guinea and Cabo Verde: 1972 and 1975” as part of the lecture series, “Charting the Portuguese Black Atlantic" at New York University.
Since 1962, the Decolonization Committee was the United Nations (UN) main body entrusted with the study of colonial issues. Consisting largely of Afro-Asian member states, the Committee was the source of the most controversial UN decisions regarding Portuguese colonialism. In response to repeated invitations by the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cabo Verde (PAIGC) and its leader Amílcar Cabral, the Committee dispatched a visiting mission to the so-called liberated areas of Guinea in April 1972. Following the end of the Estado Novo (New State) regime in Portugal, in the course of the negotiations for independence, the PAIGC requested a second visit, this time to Cabo Verde, which took place between February and March 1975. Both UN visits played a key role in Portuguese decolonization, paving the way for the PAIGC’s recognition as the sole and authentic representative of the populations of Guinea and Cabo Verde. Drawing from underused sources, this chapter analyses how the visiting missions helped the PAIGC sideline competition from political rivals and highlighted the significance of the UN as a standard setting for Portuguese decolonization.
Aurora Almada e Santos is a researcher at the Contemporary History Institute of the New University of Lisbon and a Fulbright post-doctoral researcher at Tulane University. Her scientific area of activity is the International History and her domain of specialization is the international dimension of the struggle for self-determination and independence of Portuguese colonies. Having as major focus the role played by the international organizations, in her master and PhD she gave special attention to the activities developed by the United Nations regarding the Portuguese colonial issue. She intended to demonstrate that in the analysis of Portuguese decolonization it is necessary to take into account the UN pressure. Her academic activities includes the publishing of articles and book chapters, the participation in conferences in Portugal and abroad, the organization of publications and conferences, the review of articles, the collaboration in the executive board of a peer review journal, the contribution for working groups and the membership of professional associations
NYU Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies
NYU Department of Spanish and Portuguese
NYU Center for the Study of Africa and the African Diaspora
Hemispheric Institute of Performance & Politics
King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center