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Charlesia Alexis: The Struggle Of The Chagossian Women

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Chapter Summary

Charlesia Alexis still clearly remembers the day, more than three decades ago, when she was approached by three other Chagossian women - including her sister-in-law, Lisette Talate - who encouraged her to get involved in campaigning for Chagossians' rights. The women took strategic advice from high-profile Mauritian sympathisers and decided to work together. At first, the group organised demonstrations on the streets. Later, teams of Chagossian women held a series of four hunger strikes in Cassis, Terre Rouge and twice in Jardin de la Compagnie in Port Louis. Their efforts eventually resulted in negotiations with the Mauritian government and the UK government, culminating in compensation deals in 1978 and 1982. Charlesia, now a great-grandmother living in Crawley (West Sussex), still believes that "the Ilois problem isn't going away; the British government must recognise our suffering" and "give us something"..

Keywords: British government; Chagossian Women; Charlesia Alexis; Jardin de la Compagnie; Mauritian government



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