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Woman from Benin

Africa's population has rapidly increased over the last 40 years, and consequently, it is relatively young. In some African states, half or more of the population is under 25 years of age.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> The total number of people in Africa increased from 229 million in 1950 to 630 million in 1990.<ref>"Past and and future population of Africa". Source: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2013).</ref> As of 2014, the population of Africa is estimated at 1.2 billion.<ref>UNICEF Report: Africa's Population Could Hit 4 Billion By 2100. National Public Radio (NPR). 13 August 2014.</ref> Africa's total population surpassing other continents is fairly recent; African population surpassed Europe in the 1990s, while the Americas was overtaken sometime around the year 2000; Africa's rapid population growth is expected to overtake the only two nations currently larger than its population, at roughly the same time - India and China's 1.4 billion people each will swap ranking around the year 2022.<ref>http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/30/world/asia/india-will-be-most-populous-country-sooner-than-thought-un-says.html?_r=0 NYT India Will Be Most Populous Country Sooner Than Thought, U.N. Says</ref>

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San Bushman man from Botswana

Speakers of Bantu languages (part of the Niger–Congo family) are the majority in southern, central and southeast Africa. The Bantu-speaking peoples from The Sahel progressively expanded over most of Sub-Saharan Africa.<ref>Luc-Normand Tellier (2009). "Urban world history: an economic and geographical perspective". PUQ. p. 204. ISBN 2-7605-1588-5</ref> But there are also several Nilotic groups in South Sudan and East Africa, the mixed Swahili people on the Swahili Coast, and a few remaining indigenous Khoisan ("San" or "Bushmen") and Pygmy peoples in southern and central Africa, respectively. Bantu-speaking Africans also predominate in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, and are found in parts of southern Cameroon. In the Kalahari Desert of Southern Africa, the distinct people known as the Bushmen (also "San", closely related to, but distinct from "Hottentots") have long been present. The San are physically distinct from other Africans and are the indigenous people of southern Africa. Pygmies are the pre-Bantu indigenous peoples of central Africa.<ref>"Pygmies struggle to survive in war zone where abuse is routine". Times Online. December 16, 2004.</ref>

The peoples of West Africa primarily speak Niger–Congo languages, belonging mostly, though not exclusively, to its non-Bantu branches, though some Nilo-Saharan and Afro-Asiatic speaking groups are also found. The Niger–Congo-speaking Yoruba, Igbo, Fulani, Akan and Wolof ethnic groups are the largest and most influential. In the central Sahara, Mandinka or Mande groups are most significant. Chadic-speaking groups, including the Hausa, are found in more northerly parts of the region nearest to the Sahara, and Nilo-Saharan communities, such as the Songhai, Kanuri and Zarma, are found in the eastern parts of West Africa bordering Central Africa.

The peoples of North Africa consist of three main indigenous groups: Berbers in the northwest, Egyptians in the northeast, and Nilo-Saharan-speaking peoples in the east. The Arabs who arrived in the 7th century introduced the Arabic language and Islam to North Africa. The Semitic Phoenicians (who founded Carthage) and Hyksos, the Indo-Iranian Alans, the Indo- European Greeks, Romans, and Vandals settled in North Africa as well. Significant Berber communities remain within Morocco and Algeria in the 21st century, while, to a lesser extent, Berber speakers are also present in some regions of Tunisia and Libya.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}</ref> The Berber-speaking Tuareg and other often-nomadic peoples are the principal inhabitants of the Saharan interior of North Africa. In Mauritania, there is a small but near-extinct Berber community in the north and Niger–Congo-speaking peoples in the south, though in both regions Arabic and Arab culture predominates. In Sudan, although Arabic and Arab culture predominate, it is mostly inhabited by groups that originally spoke Nilo-Saharan, such as the Nubians, Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa, who, over the centuries, have variously intermixed with migrants from the Arabian peninsula. Small communities of Afro-Asiatic-speaking Beja nomads can also be found in Egypt and Sudan.{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||date=__DATE__ |$B= {{#invoke:Category handler|main}}{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}[citation needed] }}

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Beja bedouins from Northeast Africa

In the Horn of Africa, some Ethiopian and Eritrean groups (like the Amhara and Tigrayans, collectively known as Habesha) speak languages from the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family, while the Oromo and Somali speak languages from the Cushitic branch of Afro-Asiatic.

Prior to the decolonization movements of the post-World War II era, Europeans were represented in every part of Africa.<ref>"We Want Our Country" (3 of 10). Time, November 5, 1965.</ref> Decolonization during the 1960s and 1970s often resulted in the mass emigration of white settlers – especially from Algeria and Morocco (1.6 million pieds-noirs in North Africa),<ref>Raimondo Cagiano De Azevedo (1994). "Migration and development co-operation.". Council of Europe, p. 25. ISBN 92-871-2611-9</ref> Kenya, Congo,<ref>"Jungle Shipwreck". Time. July 25, 1960.</ref> Rhodesia, Mozambique and Angola.<ref>"Flight from Angola", The Economist , August 16, 1975.</ref> Between 1975 and 1977, over a million colonials returned to Portugal alone.<ref>Portugal - Emigration, Eric Solsten, ed. Portugal: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1993.</ref> Nevertheless, white Africans remain an important minority in many African states, particularly Zimbabwe, Namibia, Réunion, and the Republic of South Africa.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> The country with the largest white African population is South Africa.<ref>South Africa: People: Ethnic Groups. World Factbook of CIA.</ref> Dutch and British diasporas represent the largest communities of European ancestry on the continent today.<ref name=World></ref>

European colonization also brought sizable groups of Asians, particularly people from the Indian subcontinent, to British colonies. Large Indian communities are found in South Africa, and smaller ones are present in Kenya, Tanzania, and some other southern and southeast African countries. The large Indian community in Uganda was expelled by the dictator Idi Amin in 1972, though many have since returned. The islands in the Indian Ocean are also populated primarily by people of Asian origin, often mixed with Africans and Europeans. The Malagasy people of Madagascar are an Austronesian people, but those along the coast are generally mixed with Bantu, Arab, Indian and European origins. Malay and Indian ancestries are also important components in the group of people known in South Africa as Cape Coloureds (people with origins in two or more races and continents). During the 20th century, small but economically important communities of Lebanese and Chinese<ref name="Africa"/> have also developed in the larger coastal cities of West and East Africa, respectively.<ref>"Naomi Schwarz, "Lebanese Immigrants Boost West African Commerce", VOANews.com, July 10, 2007.</ref>


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