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Minister highlights Scots links to Africa

Culture Minister Mike Russell has highlighted Scotland’s long relationship with Malawi at a University event.

At a conference held by the University’s Centre for African Studies, Mr Russell underlined Scotland’s ongoing commitment to Malawi.

These build on ties that stretch back to the 19th century.

Sharing insights

Also speaking at the conference was Baroness Amos, former UK minister for International Development, who delivered the Royal African Society Lecture.

Research presented at the conference explored the history of Scotland’s relationship with Africa, as well as the role of the African community in Scotland today.

Also under discussion was what Scotland can learn from Africa in fields such as HIV and Aids care.

Interview with Dr Lawrence Dritsas

Watch an interview in which Dr Lawrence Dritsas of the School of Social and Political Studies discusses the University's ties with Africa.

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Historic relationship

2009 marks the 150th anniversary of the graduation of James Africanus Horton - the first African to study at a British University.

It also marks 150 years since David Livingstone’s Zambezi Expedition, which entered the area that is now Malawi.

Livingstone's second-in-command, John Kirk, was an Edinburgh graduate.

Famous figures

Other important African figures associated with Edinburgh include Julius Nyerere, the first President of Tanzania, who is also an Edinburgh graduate.

Missionary Mary Slessor, who is depicted on Clydesdale Bank £10 notes, studied at the Moray House School of Education, now part of the University.