Introduction

An ethnic group or an ethnicity is a category of people who identify with each other based on similarities such as common ancestry, language, history, society, culture or nation. Ethnicity is usually an inherited status based on the society in which one lives. Membership of an ethnic group tends to be defined by a shared cultural heritage, ancestry, origin myth, history, homeland, language or dialect, symbolic systems such as religion, mythology and ritual, cuisine, dressing style, art or physical appearance.

Ethnic groups, derived from the same historical founder population, often continue to speak related languages and share a similar gene pool. By way of language shift, acculturation, adoption and religious conversion, it is sometimes possible for individuals or groups to leave one ethnic group and become part of another (except for ethnic groups emphasizing homogeneity or racial purity as a key membership criterion).

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In the news

22 February 2019 – 2019 Venezuelan presidential crisis
Venezuelan National Guard (GNB) troops open fire on a group of indigenous Pemon protesters that attempted to block a military convoy heading to the Brazil–Venezuela border, killing at least two people and wounding 14 others, several seriously. (The Washington Post) (Miami Herald)
19 February 2019 – 2019 Kaduna State massacre
Kaduna State governor Nasir el-Rufai reports the death toll from Friday's attack in Kajuru is now more than 130, most from the Fulani ethnic group. Nigerian authorities have not identified the gunmen's motive, but they do not believe the attack was related to the upcoming election. (Al Jazeera) (Eyewitness news)
15 February 2019 – Ethnic issues in Japan
The government of Japan approves a bill which officially acknowledges the Ainu as an indigenous people, following a non-binding resolution that was passed in 2008. (The Japan Times)

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