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Mauritius : Commemoration to mark the 179th Anniversary of Abolition of Slavery at Le Morne

A view of Le Morne cultural landscape
A view of Le Morne cultural landscape
The 179th anniversary of the Abolition of Slavery is celebrated today on this Saturday 1st February in Mauritius, declared public holiday. Following the tradition, a series of activities  are expected to take place today to commemorate this event at Le Morne village, situated in the south-east of the island.

Le Morne cultural landscape has been inscribed on the World Heritage list by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) since 6 July 2008, recognising therefore the historical site in memory of slavery in Mauritius.

Le Morne mountain, known as Le Morne Brabant, is considered to be a symbol of the slaves' struggle for freedom and was the sanctuary for maroons.  Besides, the theme chosen this year is "Le Morne : Enn Sinbol" (A Symbol).

The Ministry of Arts and Culture, in collaboration with Le Morne Heritage Trust Fund, the Nelson Mandela Centre for African and Creole Culture as well as Creole Speaking Union are organising several activities today.

The programme will start at 11 o'clock with the national anthem sung by some children and youth of Le Morne Village, followed by a South-African song to pay a special tribute to late Nelson Mandela.

The other activities include : a ceremony of wreath laying at the International Slave Route Monument, the unveiling of a sculpture by the Senegalese artist Ndary Lo, a cultural show focussing on the history of slavery in Mauritius, particularly on  resistance and marooning, a projection on big screen of buildings constructed by slaves, especially the old roads in Port-Louis and an exhibition retracing the history of slavery at Macaque village.

Tomorrow afternoon, Sunday, a ceremony of wreath laying is expected to be held at Monument aux Esclaves (Slavery Monument), at Pointe-Canon, Mahébourg.

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