Italian East Africa, former federation of the Italian colonies of Eritrea and Italian Somaliland and the kingdom of Ethiopia. The federation was formed (1936) to consolidate the administration of the three areas. During the federation's existence, efforts were made to construct road systems and to establish new industries and agricultural plantations. Resistance to Italian rule was particularly strong in Ethiopia, and when British forces invaded the federation in Jan., 1941, they received widespread support. By Dec., 1942, the Italians had been totally defeated. Ethiopia was restored its independence; Eritrea was placed under Ethiopian control in 1952 (becoming independent of that country in 1993); and Italian Somaliland, after a period as a UN trusteeship, became part of Somalia in 1960.
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