The fight against the dismantling of apartheid in South Africa and the end of colonial rule in southern Africa was supported in the region  by a group of countries called the Frontline States.

The Frontline States included Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and, from 1980, Zimbabwe.

Formed in 1970 at a time when the apartheid government in South Africa committed atrocities against blacks with impunity and attempted to export its system of oppression to neighboring countries in the region, the Frontline States aimed at combating this ill-treatment of indigenous blacks and to coordinate the responses of member countries to similar abuses across Africa.

They also sought to co-ordinate member states’ responses to apartheid and to formulate a uniform policy towards apartheid government and the liberation movements.

For the liberation movement in Zimbabwe, the formation of the Frontline States was a welcome development and a new front in the fight against white oppression.

The continued support by the various members to the front line states allowed for direct help to black fighters in the form of training, bases material support and money.

Training camps and military bases for ZANLA and ZIPRA, the military wings of ZANU and ZAPU were readily available in Botswana, Tanzania and Mozambique and Zambia.

With diplomatic, economic and military support, the dream of freedom was realised in Zimbabwe after a protracted war of liberation on 18 April 1980.