Berlin Conference of 1884–85

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Berlin Conference of 1884–85


an international conference that was a phase in the struggle between the capitalist states for the division of Africa. The conference was held in Berlin from Nov. 15, 1884, to Feb. 26, 1885. The Berlin Conference was attended by representatives of Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Great Britain, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, the USA, Turkey, France, and Sweden. The Berlin Conference recognized the sovereignty of the International Association of the Congo, which was headed by Leopold II, king of the Belgians, over the larger part of the Congo basin (seized by the International Association in 1879–84). The conference adopted the General Act, which provided for granting all powers freedom of trade and navigation in the basins of the Congo and Niger rivers. While prohibiting slave trade, the General Act nevertheless proclaimed the legality of colonial conquests (arts. 34 and 35). In the course of bilateral negotiations between the participants in the Berlin Conference, some frontiers of their African possessions were specified.


Martens, F. F. Sobranie traktatov i konventsii, zakliuchennykh Rossieiu s inostrannymi derzhavami, vol. 8. St. Petersburg, 1888. Pages 695–725.


Zusmanovich, A. Z. Imperialisticheskii razdel basseina Kongo (1876–1894). Moscow, 1962. (Contains bibliography.)
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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