BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Somali Swahili French Great Lakes Hausa Portugeuse
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Africa  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Sunday, 16 June, 2002, 11:09 GMT 12:09 UK
S Africa remembers Soweto killings
Soweto schoolchildren
Veterans want a new generation to know about the past

The people of South Africa are commemorating the anniversary of the Soweto uprising of 1976, one of the most emotive events in the country's history.

Dozens of black school children who refused to be taught in Afrikaans, the favoured language of the apartheid regime, were shot by the police on that day.

Rioting then spread across South Africa and hundreds of people were killed.

Now, 26 years later, a special museum commemorating the events of 16 June has been opened in Soweto.

Record of events

One of the first children to be killed was 13-year-old Hector Petersen.

Hector Petersen being carried away in 1976
Hector Petersen's death became a powerful motif of the anti-apartheid struggle
His agonising death was captured forever in a famous photograph.

On Sunday, the government opened a Hector Petersen memorial museum, only yards from the spot where he was shot.

The museum captures in video and photographs the momentous events which changed South Africa forever, as well as explaining the history of the vast Soweto township.

'Lost generation'

The heroes of 16 June hope the museum will appeal to young people in Soweto for whom 1976 is distant history.

Some South African commentators refer to today's township youths as a lost generation who have little appreciation of the past and little hope for the future.

In 1976 black leaders urged South African children to boycott schools in protest at apartheid.

At Sunday's ceremony, speaker after speaker urged children to go to school so that they can build a better country.

See also:

16 Jun 01 | Africa
13 Jun 01 | Africa
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Africa stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Africa stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes