SOURCE: African Queen Mines Ltd.

February 24, 2009 12:30 ET

African Queen Abandons Cazula Project in Mozambique to Focus on Highly Prospective Fingoe Belt Gold Project

VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwire - February 24, 2009) - AFRICAN QUEEN MINES LTD. (the "Company") (TSX-V: AQ) (FRANKFURT: QM0) announces that it has provided formal notice of abandonment to Manica Minerals Ltd. ("Manica") with respect to the Cazula Gold Project in Mozambique (the "Project"). The Company has the right to earn up to an 85% interest in the Project pursuant to the Letter Agreement dated August 9, 2006, between Pan African Mining Corp., predecessor to the Company, and Manica, as supplemented on August 8, 2007 (the "Agreement"). By abandoning the Project at this time, the Company is relinquishing all rights with respect to the underlying property licenses and otherwise relating to the Project.

The Agreement covered exploration and development of the historic Machinga gold mine district made up of nine Prospecting Licenses encompassing approximately 350 sq km situated near the town of Tete in central Mozambique. Gold and minor amounts of copper were mined in the area during the 1910s and again more recently prior to 1978.

During the past two years, the Company carried out exploration activities on the Project under the guidance of Senior Consulting Geologist Pete Siegfried, P. Geol., a qualified person. Work included detailed mapping and sampling of the old workings, ground geophysics, trenching, channel sampling of old adits and limited reconnaissance drilling. The prospecting operations were carried out on behalf of the Company by Remote Exploration Services of Cape Town, South Africa. An aggregate of approximately $600,000 was expended on the exploratory program.

While surface sampling of the area reflected the presence of gold with grades typically ranging from 0.1 g/t Au to 1.0 g/t Au, trench sampling and limited reconnaissance drilling did not provide encouragement for the existence of a commercially viable primary deposit in the area. Gold mineralization below surface associated with quartz veining and hydrothermally altered and brecciated host rocks was generally found to be sporadic and discontinuous.

Due to the results of the exploration program to date, management of the Company has concluded that no further work on the Project is recommended and the Project should be abandoned. According to Irwin Olian, CEO of the Company, "Results from Cazula to date do not justify further expenditure of time, energy and funds on the part of the Company. Recent encouraging results from our Fingoe Belt Gold Project make it clear that our financial and personnel resources are best allocated toward that more highly prospective project. In this rather difficult economic environment it is important that we prioritize our projects with a view toward committing our resources to those projects most likely to add value long-term for our shareholders. In addition to the Fingoe Belt Gold Project in Mozambique, we remain very excited about our diamond projects in Botswana and Namibia, which will be the principal focus of our activities in the coming months."

About African Queen

The Company is an exploratory resource company with diversified mineral properties in Southern Africa. It is exploring its properties in Botswana and Namibia for diamonds, and it is exploring its properties in Mozambique for gold and other metals. The Company licences in Botswana and Namibia comprise approximately 11,800 sq km of diamond prospects. In Mozambique it has approximately 1350 sq km of gold and other metals licences under agreements with two other companies. Its operations in Botswana are carried out through its operating subsidiary, PAM Botswana (Pty) Ltd.; its operations in Namibia are carried out through its operating subsidiary PAM Minerals Namibia (Pty) Ltd.; and its operations in Mozambique are carried out through its subsidiary PAM Mocambique Limitada.

The Company has its executive offices in Vancouver, Canada.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF
AFRICAN QUEEN MINES, LTD.

"Irwin Olian"
Irwin Olian
Chairman & CEO

The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of the content of the information contained herein. The statements made in this press release may contain certain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ from the Company's expectations.

Contact Information

  • For more information, contact:

    Irwin Olian
    President and CEO
    E-mail: Email Contact
    Phone: (604) 899-0100
    Fax: (604) 899-0200

    Carrie Howes
    Corporate Communications
    Email: Email Contact
    Phone: Dusseldorf - +49 (0) 1722 1234 47
    Phone: London - +44 (0) 7780 602 788