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Lake Albert

Lake Albert, also Albert Nyanza and Lake Mobutu Sese Seko, is a lake in central Africa, on the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire). Lake Albert is the northernmost of the chain of lakes in the Great Rift Valley; it is about 160 km (100 mi) long and 30 km (19 mi) wide, with a maximum depth of 51 m (168 ft), and a surface elevation of 619 m (2,030 ft) above sea level.

Lake Albert is part of the complicated system of the upper Nile. Its main sources are the Victoria Nile, ultimately coming from Lake Victoria, and the Semliki River, which issues from Lake Edward. Its outlet, at the northernmost tip of the lake, is the Albert Nile (which becomes known as the Mountain Nile when it enters Sudan).

At the southern end of the lake, where the Semliki comes in, there are swamps, while a range of hills called the Blue Mountains tower over the northwestern shore. The few settlements along the shore include Butiaba and Pakwach.

In 1864, the explorer Samuel Baker became the first European to see the lake; he named it after Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria.