A chronology of key events:
3rd century - Iron Age Bantu-speaking tribes move into area from west-central Africa.
11th century - Shona empire develops between Limpopo and Zambezi rivers.
1498 - Portuguese expedition led by explorer Vasco da Gama drops anchor off Mozambican coast.
16-17th centuries - Portuguese venture into
interior. Following military campaigns, colonists set up trading posts
and mining enterprises and parcel-out land to European settlers.
18th-19th centuries - Mozambique becomes major slave-trading centre.
Slave trade banned
1842 - Portugal outlaws slave trade from Mozambique, but clandestine trade continues for decades.
1878 - Portugal leases large tracts of
territory to trading companies, who use conscript African labour to
further their interests and build infrastructure.
1891 - Portugal and Britain define Mozambique's western and southern borders.
1902 - Lourenco Marques becomes colonial capital.
1932 - Portugal breaks up trading companies and imposes direct rule over colony.
1950s-60s - Colonial economy thrives, attracting thousands of new Portuguese settlers to Mozambique.
1962 - Exiled activists opposed to
Portuguese colonial power meet in Tanzania to form Mozambique Liberation
Front - Frelimo - headed by Eduardo Mondlane.
Eduardo Mondlane led the Frelimo independence movement which eventually took over from the Portuguese colonists
1964 - Frelimo forces begin war of independence. Guerrilla tactics frustrate Portuguese and Frelimo take control of much of north.
1974 - Military coup in Portugal. New
government supports autonomy for colonies; start of departure of 250,000
1974 - Portugal and Frelimo sign Lusaka Accord; transitional government is established.
1975 - Mozambique becomes independent. Frelimo rules under single-party system with leader Samora Machel as president.
Samora Machel was independent Mozambique's first president
1976 - Lourenco Marques is renamed Maputo.
1976 - Renamo - an anti-Frelimo resistance
group - is set up by white Rhodesian officers as clashes with Frelimo
forces escalate and Mozambique imposes economic sanctions against
1977 - Frelimo adopts Marxist-Leninist doctrine.
1980 - Renamo is supported by South Africa after collapse of Rhodesian regime.
1984 - Under Nkomati Accord, Mozambique
drops support for African National Congress (ANC) in return for South
African withdrawal of backing for Renamo. Short-lived ceasefire fails
and Renamo continues its offensives.
1986 - President Machel is killed in an air crash. Joaquim Chissano becomes president.
Samora Machel was killed in an unexplained air crash in South Africa in 1986. The wreckage is pictured in a museum
1989 - Frelimo renounces Marxist-Leninist doctrine.
1990 - Government amends the constitution to
allow a multi-party political system. Initial talks take place between
government and Renamo.
1992 - President Chissano and Renamo leader Afonso Dhaklama sign peace deal in Rome.
1994 - Chissano is reelected.
1995 - Mozambique becomes Commonwealth member.
1999 December - Chissano defeats Renamo's Dhlakama in presidential elections.
2000 February - Devastating floods sweep
through south of country, forcing tens of thousands to flee and leaving
trail of destruction.
2000 November - More then 40 people killed
in rioting at Renamo protests against 1999 elections. Renamo claims poll
was rigged; international observers say election was free and fair.
2000 November - 82 inmates die at prison in
north, many of them Renamo supporters rounded up after election riots.
Preliminary report suggests asphyxiation owing to overcrowding as cause.
2001 March - Flooding in Zambezi Valley
displaces around 70,000 people. Two upstream dams forced to open flood
gates, releasing huge volumes of water into river.
2002 June - Frelimo chooses independence
struggle veteran Armando Guebuza as candidate for 2004 presidential
elections; Chissano had declined to run for third term.
2002 November - Two defendants in murder
trial allege that son of President Chissano is linked to 2000 killing of
journalist Carlos Cardoso. Nymphine Chissano denies knowledge of
2003 November - Brazil promises to build plant in Mozambique to produce anti-retroviral drugs for HIV-Aids sufferers.
Guebuza as president
2005 February - Frelimo's Armando Guebuza
inaugurated as president after defeating his main rival, Afonso Dhlakama
of Renamo, in November's presidential poll.
2005 October - Work starts on a long-planned
"Unity Bridge" over the Ruvuma river, intended to link Mozambique and
2006 July - The World Bank cancels most of Mozambique's debt under a plan promoted by the G8 nations.
2007 February - Chinese President Hu Jintao visits, promises interest-free loans for agriculture, health and education.
2007 March - Three days of mourning are declared after nearly 100 people are killed in an explosion at an arms depot in the capital.
2008 January - More than 50,000 people displaced by flooding along the Zambezi valley.
2008 May - Government begins voluntary
repatriation of citizens in the wake of xenophobic violence in South
Africa targeting African migrants. Thousands of Mozambican legal workers
in South Africa are said to have fled the country.
2009 January - UN says 350,000 people in Mozambique are in need of food aid as a result of poor harvests caused by poor rainfall.
2009 October - The government announces a
$500m loan from the European Union and Danish and Dutch governments to
build a railway line to link the coal-rich northern Moatize mines to the
port of Nacala by 2015.
President Guebuza wins re-election with more than 75% of the
vote. Main opposition Renamo party alleges widespread fraud, while
monitors accuse election commission of lacking independence.
2010 February - Former minister Antonio
Munguambe sentenced to 20 years in prison for embezzling $1.7m in state
funds, in the highest-level corruption conviction since 1975.
2010 September - Food price protests. Several people killed when police open fire.
2010 October - Diplomatic row with Malawi
over new waterway connecting land-locked Malawi with Mozambican coast.
Mozambique impounds first barge to use new route.
2010 December - Mozambique has become a
leading drug trafficking centre, with senior figures turning a blind
eye, according to classified US documents released on WikiLeaks.
2011 October - Italian energy company Eni says it's made a giant gas discovery off the coast.
2012 February - South Africa deploys troops along the border to combat rhino poaching.
2012 March - Police raid a camp housing 300
supporters of the opposition Renamo movement who had allegedly been
waiting for orders to stage anti-government protests.
2012 April - Portugal agrees to give up its remaining stake in the Cahora Bassa hydro-electric scheme, ending a long-running dispute.
2013 June - Tension flares between authorities and opposition Renamo, prompting fears of a return to civil war.
2013 February - Campaign group Environmental
Investigation Agency says half of Mozambican timber exports to China
come from illegal logging.
2013 June - Mining giant Rio Tinto suspends coal exports after former Renamo guerrillas threaten to disrupt rail traffic.
2013 October - Renamo says it is pulling out
of the 1992 peace deal after the army seizes a base belonging to the
opposition movement's leader, Afonso Dhlakama.
Taken from BBC Mozambican Timeline. Click here to see the site.