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Colonel Ojukwu, a soldier from the Ibo tribe, announced the secession of the Eastern Region, and declared a Republic of Biafra.
Events following this declaration resulted in the Biafra War, one of the most deadly civil wars in Africa, claiming the lives of over two million Nigerians.
The name Nigeria was coined by Lord Lugard's wife in 1897 in honor of the 2,600-mile-long Niger River.
The first Europeans to reach Nigeria were the Portuguese in the fifteenth century.
With the arrival of the Europeans, slavery became more lucrative.
A coastal state on the shores of the Gulf of Guinea in West Africa, Nigeria is bounded by Niger to the north, Benin to the west, Cameroon to the east and southeast, and Chad to the northeast.Intermarriages flourished among the various groups. One of the most prosperous trades even before the arrival of the Europeans was the slave trade.It was common practice in many African civilizations to sell war captives, delinquent children, and the handicapped; and Nigeria was no exception.There were village groups, clans, emirates, states, kingdoms, and some empires.The Kanem-Bornu empire goes as far back as the tenth century.