Germany took control of the area which it called South West Africa in the late 1800s.
The discovery of diamonds in 1908 prompted an influx of Europeans.
South Africa seized it during the First World War and administered it under a League of Nations mandate.
Namibians achieved independence in 1990 after a bush war of almost 25 years. Inter-racial reconciliation encouraged the country's white people to remain and they still play a major role in farming and other economic sectors.