The Azanian People’s Liberation Army (APLA) disbands

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Saturday, 20 March 1999

The Azanian People's Liberation Army (APLA) was the underground military wing of the Pan African Congress (PAC). APLA was formed in the 1960s, after the banning of the PAC and other political organisations such as the African National Congress (ANC) and the South African Communist Party (SACP). APLA supported the PAC ideology of iZwe ngelethu, "Africa is Ours", and Mayibuye iAfrika, "Bring back Africa".

APLA was associated with attacks on and murders of White South Africans. Most of these murders and attacks reportedly took place in the Eastern and Western Cape. According to the evidence of APLA victims before the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) most of these attacks and murders were random acts of violence and were not politically motivated. During the 1980s APLA came up with the provocative slogan of "One Settler, One Bullet". Killings and attacks on White farmers were believed to be motivated by this slogan.

On 26 July 1993 members of APLA opened fire on a congregation in St James Church in Kenilworth, in Cape Town, killing eleven people and injuring fifty others.

The disbanding of APLA followed the TRC conclusion that the group had often acted with hatred rather than justice. Soon after these TRC findings APLA disbanded.

References:
• O'Malley,"Azanian People'S Liberation Army (APLA)",From: O'Malley,[Online],Available at: www.nelsonmandela.org,[Accessed on: 14 March 2014]

Last updated : 25-Oct-2016

This article was produced by South African History Online on 16-Mar-2011

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