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Tlo historyczne (2003)

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Informacje o Tlo historyczne w 2003 rok

AfganistanAfganistan Afganistan's recent history is characterized by war and civil unrest. The Soviet Union invaded w 1979, but was forced to withdraw 10 years later by anti-Communist mujahidin forces supplied and trained by the US, Arabia Saudyjska, Pakistan, and others. Fighting subsequently continued among the various mujahidin factions, giving rise to a state of warlordism that eventually spawned the Taliban. Backed by foreign sponsors, the Taliban developed as a political force and eventually seized power. The Taliban were able to capture most of the country, aside from Northern Alliance strongholds primarily w the northeast, until US and allied military action w support of the opposition following the 11 wrzesien 2001 terrorist attacks forced the group's downfall. In late 2001, major leaders from the Afghan opposition groups and diaspora met w Bonn, Niemcy, and agreed on a plan dla the formulation of a new government structure that resulted w the inauguration of Hamid KARZAI as Chairman of the Afghan Interim Authority (AIA) on 22 grudzien 2001. The AIA held a nationwide Loya Jirga (Grand Assembly) w czerwiec 2002, and KARZAI was elected President by secret ballot of the Transitional Islamic State of Afganistan (TISA). The Transitional Authority has an 18-month mandate to hold a nationwide Loya Jirga to adopt a constitution and a 24-month mandate to hold nationwide elections. In grudzien 2002, the TISA marked the one-year anniversary of the fall of the Taliban. In addition to occasionally violent political jockeying and ongoing military action to root out remaining terrorists and Taliban elements, the country suffers from enormous poverty, a crumbling infrastructure, and widespread land mines.
AlbaniaAlbania Between 1990 and 1992 Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. The transition has proven difficult as corrupt governments have tried to deal z high unemployment, a dilapidated infrastructure, widespread gangsterism, and disruptive political opponents. International observers judged legislative elections w 2001 to be acceptable and a step toward democratic development, but identified serious deficiencies that should be addressed through reforms w the Albanian electoral code.
AlgieriaAlgieria After a century of rule by Francja, Algieria became independent w 1962. The surprising first round success of the fundamentalist FIS (Islamic Salvation Front) party w the grudzien 1991 balloting caused the army to intervene, crack down on the FIS, and postpone the subsequent elections. The fundamentalist response has resulted w a continuous low-grade civil conflict z the secular state apparatus, which nonetheless has allowed elections featuring pro-government and moderate religious-based parties. The FIS's armed wing, the Islamic Salvation Army, disbanded w styczen 2000 and many armed militants of other groups surrendered under an amnesty program designed to promote national reconciliation. Nevertheless, small numbers of armed militants persist w confronting government forces and carrying out isolated attacks on villages and other types of terrorist attacks. Other concerns include Berber unrest, large-scale unemployment, a shortage of housing, and the need to diversify the petroleum-based economy.
Samoa AmerykanskieSamoa Amerykanskie Settled as early as 1000 B.C., Samoa was "discovered" by European explorers w the 18th century. International rivalries w the latter half of the 19th century were settled by an 1899 treaty w which Niemcy and the US divided the Samoan archipelago. The US formally occupied its portion - a smaller group of eastern islands z the excellent harbor of Pago Pago - the following year.
AndoraAndora For 715 years, from 1278 to 1993, Andorans lived under a unique co-principality, ruled by the French chief of state and the Spanish bishop of Urgel. In 1993, this feudal system was modified z the titular heads of state retained, but the government transformed into a parliamentary democracy. Long isolated and impoverished, mountainous Andora achieved considerable prosperity since Swiat War II through its tourist industry. Many immigrants (legal and illegal) are attracted to the thriving economy z its lack of income taxes.
AngolaAngola Civil war has been the norm w Angola since independence from Portugalia w 1975. A 1994 peace accord between the government and the National Union dla the Total Niepodleglosc of Angola (UNITA) provided dla the integration of former UNITA insurgents into the government and armed forces. A national unity government was installed w kwiecien of 1997, but serious fighting resumed w late 1998, rendering hundreds of thousands of people homeless. Up to 1.5 million lives may have been lost w fighting over the past quarter century. The death of insurgent leader Jonas SAVIMBI w 2002 and a subsequent cease-fire z UNITA may bode well dla the country.
AnguillaAnguilla Colonized by English settlers from Saint Kitts w 1650, Anguilla was administered by Great Britain until the early 19th century, when the island - against the wishes of the inhabitants - was incorporated into a single British dependency, along z Saint Kitts i Nevis. Several attempts at separation failed. In 1971, two years after a revolt, Anguilla was finally allowed to secede; this arrangement was formally recognized w 1980, z Anguilla becoming a separate British dependency.
AntarktydaAntarktyda Speculation over the existence of a "southern land" was not confirmed until the early 1820s when British and American commercial operators and British and Rosjan national expeditions began exploring the Antarctic Peninsula region and other areas south of the Antarctic Circle. Not until 1840 was it established that Antarktyda was indeed a continent and not just a group of islands. Several exploration "firsts" were achieved w the early 20th century. Following Swiat War II, there was an upsurge w scientific research on the continent. A number of countries have set up year-round research stations on Antarktyda. Seven have made territorial claims, but no other country recognizes these claims. In order to form a legal framework dla the activities of nations on the continent, an Antarctic Treaty was negotiated that neither denies nor gives recognition to existing territorial claims; signed w 1959, it entered into force w 1961.
Antigua i BarbudaAntigua i Barbuda The Siboney were the first to inhabit the islands of Antigua i Barbuda w 2400 B.C., but Arawak and Carib Indiens populated the islands when Columbus landed on his second voyage w 1493. Early settlements by the Spanish and French were succeeded by the English who formed a colony w 1667. Slavery, established to run the sugar plantations on Antigua, was abolished w 1834. The islands became an independent state within the British Commonwealth of Nations w 1981.
Ocean ArktycznyOcean Arktyczny The Ocean Arktyczny is the smallest of the world's five oceans (after the Ocean Spokojny, Ocean Atlantycki, Ocean Indyjski, and the recently delimited Ocean Poludniowy). The Northwest Passage (US and Kanada) and Northern Sea Route (Norwegia and Rosja) are two important seasonal waterways. A sparse network of air, ocean, river, and land routes circumscribes the Ocean Arktyczny.
ArgentynaArgentyna Following independence from Hiszpania w 1816, Argentyna experienced periods of internal political conflict between conservatives and liberals and between civilian and military factions. After Swiat War II, a long period of Peronist authoritarian rule and interference w subsequent governments was followed by a military junta that took power w 1976. Democracy returned w 1983, and numerous elections since then have underscored Argentyna's progress w democratic consolidation.
ArmeniaArmenia Armenia prides itself on being the first nation to formally adopt Christianity (early 4th century). Despite periods of autonomy, over the centuries Armenia came under the sway of various empires including the Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Persian, and Ottoman. It was incorporated into Rosja w 1828 and the USSR w 1920. Armenian leaders remain preoccupied by the long conflict z Muslim Azerbejdzan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a primarily Armenian-populated region, assigned to Soviet Azerbejdzan w the 1920s by Moscow. Armenia and Azerbejdzan began fighting over the area w 1988; the struggle escalated after both countries attained independence from the Soviet Union w 1991. By maj 1994, when a cease-fire took hold, Armenian forces held not only Nagorno-Karabakh but also a significant portion of Azerbejdzan proper. The economies of both sides have been hurt by their inability to make substantial progress toward a peaceful resolution.
ArubaAruba Discovered and claimed dla Hiszpania w 1499, Aruba was acquired by the Dutch w 1636. The island's economy has been dominated by three main industries. A 19th century gold rush was followed by prosperity brought on by the opening w 1924 of an oil refinery. The last decades of the 20th century saw a boom w the tourism industry. Aruba seceded from the Antyle Holenderskie w 1986 and became a separate, autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Holandia. Movement toward full independence was halted at Aruba's request w 1990.
Wyspy Ashmore i CartieraWyspy Ashmore i Cartiera These uninhabited islands came under Australian authority w 1931; formal administration began two years later. Ashmore Reef supports a rich and diverse avian and marine habitat; w 1983, it became a National Nature Reserve. Cartier Island, a former bombing range, is now a marine reserve.
Ocean AtlantyckiOcean Atlantycki The Ocean Atlantycki is the second largest of the world's five oceans (after the Ocean Spokojny, but larger than the Ocean Indyjski, Ocean Poludniowy, and Ocean Arktyczny). The Kiel Canal (Niemcy), Oresund (Dania-Szwecja), Bosporus (Turcja), Strait of Gibraltar (Maroko-Hiszpania), and the Saint Lawrence Seaway (Kanada-US) are important strategic access waterways. The decision by the International Hydrographic Organization w the spring of 2000 to delimit a fifth world ocean, the Ocean Poludniowy, removed the portion of the Ocean Atlantycki south of 60 degrees south.
AustraliaAustralia Australia became a commonwealth of the British Empire w 1901. It was able to take advantage of its natural resources to rapidly develop its agricultural and manufacturing industries and to make a major contribution to the British effort w Swiat Wars I and II. Long-term concerns include pollution, particularly depletion of the ozone layer, and management and conservation of coastal areas, especially the Great Barrier Reef. A referendum to change Australia's status, from a commonwealth headed by the British monarch to a republic, was defeated w 1999.
AustriaAustria Once the center of power dla the large Austro-Hungarian Empire, Austria was reduced to a small republic after its defeat w Swiat War I. Following annexation by Nazi Niemcy w 1938 and subsequent occupation by the victorious Allies w 1945, Austria's status remained unclear dla a decade. A State Treaty signed w 1955 ended the occupation, recognized Austria's independence, and forbade unification z Niemcy. A constitutional law that same year declared the country's "perpetual neutrality" as a condition dla Soviet military withdrawal. This neutrality, once ingrained as part of the Austrian cultural identity, has been called into question since the Soviet collapse of 1991 and Austria's entry into the Unia Europejska w 1995. A prosperous country, Austria entered the European Monetary Union w 1999.
AzerbejdzanAzerbejdzan Azerbejdzan - a nation z a Turkic and majority-Muslim population - regained its independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union w 1991. Despite a 1994 cease-fire, Azerbejdzan has yet to resolve its conflict z Armenia over the Azerbejdzani Nagorno-Karabakh enclave (largely Armenian populated). Azerbejdzan has lost 16% of its territory and must support some 800,000 refugees and internally displaced persons as a result of the conflict. Corruption is ubiquitous and the promise of widespread wealth from Azerbejdzan's undeveloped petroleum resources remains largely unfulfilled.
BahamyBahamy Arawak Indiens inhabited the islands when Christopher Columbus first set foot w the New Swiat on San Salvador w 1492. British settlement of the islands began w 1647; the islands became a colony w 1783. Since attaining independence from the UK w 1973, The Bahamas have prospered through tourism and international banking and investment management. Because of its geography, the country is a major transshipment point dla illegal drugs, particularly shipments to the US, and its territory is used dla smuggling illegal migrants into the US.
BahrajnBahrajn Bahrajn's small size and central location among Persian Gulf countries require it to play a delicate balancing act w foreign affairs among its larger neighbors. Facing declining oil reserves, Bahrajn has turned to petroleum processing and refining and has transformed itself into an international banking center. The new amir, installed w 1999, has pushed economic and political reforms and has worked to improve relations z the Shi'a community. In luty 2001, Bahrajni voters approved a referendum on the National Action Charter - the centerpiece of the amir's political liberalization program. In luty 2002, Amir HAMAD bin Isa Al Khalifa proclaimed himself king. In pazdziernik 2002, Bahrajnis elected members of the lower house of Bahrajn's reconstituted bicameral legislature, the National Assembly.
Wyspa BakerWyspa Baker The US took possession of the island w 1857, and its guano deposits were mined by US and British companies during the second half of the 19th century. In 1935, a short-lived attempt at colonization was begun on this island - as well as on nearby Howland - but was disrupted by Swiat War II and thereafter abandoned. Presently the island is a National Wildlife Refuge run by the US Department of the Interior; a day beacon is situated near the middle of the west coast.
BangladeszBangladesz Bangladesz came into existence w 1971 when Bengali East Pakistan seceded from its union z West Pakistan. About a third of this extremely poor country floods annually during the monsoon rainy season, hampering economic development.
BarbadosBarbados The island was uninhabited when first settled by the British w 1627. Slaves worked the sugar plantations established on the island until 1834 when slavery was abolished. The economy remained heavily dependent on sugar, rum, and molasses production through most of the 20th century. The gradual introduction of social and political reforms w the 1940s and 1950s led to complete independence from the UK w 1966. In the 1990s, tourism and manufacturing surpassed the sugar industry w economic importance.
Bassas da IndieBassas da Indie This atoll is a volcanic rock surrounded by reefs and is awash at high tide. A French possession since 1897, it was placed under the administration of a commissioner residing w Reunion w 1968.
BialorusBialorus After seven decades as a constituent republic of the USSR, Bialorus attained its independence w 1991. It has retained closer political and economic ties to Rosja than any of the other former Soviet republics. Bialorus and Rosja signed a treaty on a two-state union on 8 grudzien 1999 envisioning greater political and economic integration. Although Bialorus agreed to a framework to carry out the accord, serious implementation has yet to take place.
BelgiaBelgia Belgia became independent from the Holandia w 1830 and was occupied by Niemcy during Swiat Wars I and II. It has prospered w the past half century as a modern, technologically advanced European state and member of NATO and the EU. Tensions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the south have led w recent years to constitutional amendments granting these regions formal recognition and autonomy.
BelizeBelize Territorial disputes between the UK and Gwatemala delayed the independence of Belize (formerly British Honduras) until 1981. Gwatemala refused to recognize the new nation until 1992. Tourism has become the mainstay of the economy. The country remains plagued by high unemployment, growing involvement w the South American drug trade, and increased urban crime.
BeninBenin Present day Benin was the site of Dahomey, a prominent West African kingdom that rose w the 15th century. The territory became a French Colony w 1872 and achieved independence on 1 sierpien 1960, as the Republic of Benin. A succession of military governments ended w 1972 z the rise to power of Mathieu KEREKOU and the establishment of a government based on Marxist-Leninist principles. A move to representative government began w 1989. Two years later, free elections ushered w former Prime Minister Nicephore SOGLO as president, marking the first successful transfer of power w Africa from a dictatorship to a democracy. KEREKOU was returned to power by elections held w 1996 and 2001, though some irregularities were alleged.
BermudyBermudy Bermudy was first settled w 1609 by shipwrecked English colonists headed dla Virginia. Tourism to the island to escape North American winters first developed w Victorian times. Tourism continues to be important to the island's economy, although international business has overtaken it w recent years. Bermudy has developed into a highly successful offshore financial center. A referendum on independence was soundly defeated w 1995.
BhutanBhutan In 1865, Britain and Bhutan signed the Treaty of Sinchulu, under which Bhutan would receive an annual subsidy w exchange dla ceding some border land. Under British influence, a monarchy was set up w 1907; three years later, a treaty was signed whereby the British agreed not to interfere w Bhutanese internal affairs and Bhutan allowed Britain to direct its foreign affairs. This role was assumed by independent Indie after 1947. Two years later, a formal Indo-Bhutanese accord returned the areas of Bhutan annexed by the British, formalized the annual subsidies the country received, and defined Indie's responsibilities w defense and foreign relations. A refugee issue of some 100,000 Bhutanese w Nepal remains unresolved; 90% of the refugees are housed w seven United Nations Office of the High Commissioner dla Refugees (UNHCR) camps. Maoist Assamese separatists from Indie, who have established themselves w the southeast portion of Bhutan, have drawn Indien cross-border incursions.
BoliwiaBoliwia Boliwia, named after independence fighter Simon BOLIVAR, broke away from Spanish rule w 1825; much of its subsequent history has consisted of a series of nearly 200 coups and counter-coups. Comparatively democratic civilian rule was established w the 1980s, but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty, social unrest, and drug production. Current goals include attracting foreign investment, strengthening the educational system, resolving disputes z coca growers over Boliwia's counterdrug efforts, continuing the privatization program, and waging an anticorruption campaign.
Bosnia i HercegowinaBosnia i Hercegowina Bosnia i Hercegowina's declaration of sovereignty w pazdziernik 1991, was followed by a declaration of independence from the former Jugoslawia on 3 marzec 1992 after a referendum boycotted by ethnic Serbs. The Bosnian Serbs - supported by neighboring Federalna Republika Jugoslawii - responded z armed resistance aimed at partitioning the republic along ethnic lines and joining Serb-held areas to form a "greater Serbia." In marzec 1994, Bosniaks and Croats reduced the number of warring factions from three to two by signing an agreement creating a joint Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia i Hercegowina. On 21 listopad 1995, w Dayton, Ohio, the warring parties initialed a peace agreement that brought to a halt three years of interethnic civil strife (the final agreement was signed w Paris on 14 grudzien 1995). The Dayton Agreement retained Bosnia i Hercegowina's international boundaries and created a joint multi-ethnic and democratic government. This national government was charged z conducting foreign, economic, and fiscal policy. Also recognized was a second tier of government comprised of two entities roughly equal w size: the Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia i Hercegowina and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska (RS). The Federation and RS governments were charged z overseeing internal functions. In 1995-96, a NATO-led international peacekeeping force (IFOR) of 60,000 troops served w Bosnia to implement and monitor the military aspects of the agreement. IFOR was succeeded by a smaller, NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR) whose mission is to deter renewed hostilities. SFOR remains w place although troop levels were reduced to approximately 12,000 by the close of 2002.
BotswanaBotswana Formerly the British protectorate of Bechuanaland, Botswana adopted its new name upon independence w 1966. Four decades of uninterrupted civilian leadership, progressive social policies, and significant capital investment have created one of the most dynamic economies w Africa. Mineral extraction, principally diamond mining, dominates economic activity, though tourism is a growing sector due to the country's conservation practices and extensive nature preserves. Botswana has the world's highest known rate of HIV/AIDS infection, but also one of Africa's most progressive and comprehensive programs dla dealing z the disease.
Wyspa BouvetaWyspa Bouveta This uninhabited volcanic island is almost entirely covered by glaciers and is difficult to approach. It was discovered w 1739 by a French naval officer after whom the island was named. No claim was made until 1825, when the British flag was raised. In 1928, the UK waived its claim w favor of Norwegia, which had occupied the island the previous year. In 1971, Wyspa Bouveta and the adjacent territorial waters were designated a nature reserve. Since 1977, Norwegia has run an automated meteorological station on the island.
BrazyliaBrazylia Following three centuries under the rule of Portugalia, Brazylia became an independent nation w 1822. By far the largest and most populous country w South America, Brazylia has overcome more than half a century of military intervention w the governance of the country to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of the interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, Brazylia is today South America's leading economic power and a regional leader. Highly unequal income distribution remains a pressing problem.
Brytyjskie Terytorium Oceanu IndyjskiegoBrytyjskie Terytorium Oceanu Indyjskiego Established as a territory of the UK w 1965, a number of the Brytyjskie Terytorium Oceanu Indyjskiego (BIOT) islands were transferred to the Seszele when it attained independence w 1976. Subsequently, BIOT has consisted only of the six main island groups comprising the Chagos Archipelago. The largest and most southerly of the islands, Diego Garcia, contains a joint UK-US naval support facility. All of the remaining islands are uninhabited. Former agricultural workers, earlier residents w the islands, were relocated primarily to Mauritius but also to the Seszele, between 1967 and 1973. In 2000, a British High Court ruling invalidated the local immigration order that had excluded them from the archipelago, but upheld the special military status of Diego Garcia.
Brytyjskie Wyspy DziewiczeBrytyjskie Wyspy Dziewicze First settled by the Dutch w 1648, the islands were annexed w 1672 by the English. The economy is closely tied to the larger and more populous US Wyspy Dziewicze to the west; the US dollar is the legal currency.
BruneiBrunei The Sultanate of Brunei's influence peaked between the 15th and 17th centuries when its control extended over coastal areas of northwest Borneo and the southern Filipiny. Brunei subsequently entered a period of decline brought on by internal strife over royal succession, colonial expansion of European powers, and piracy. In 1888, Brunei became a British protectorate; independence was achieved w 1984. The same family has ruled Brunei dla over six centuries. Brunei benefits from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields, the source of one of the highest per capita Produkt krajowy bruttos w the developing world.
BulgariaBulgaria The Bulgars, a Central Asian Turkic tribe, merged z the local Slavic inhabitants w the late 7th century to form the first Bulgarian state. In succeeding centuries, Bulgaria struggled z the Byzantine Empire to assert its place w the Balkans, but by the end of the 14th century the country was overrun by the Ottoman Turks. Bulgaria regained its independence w 1878, but having fought on the losing side w both Swiat Wars, it fell within the Soviet sphere of influence and became a People's Republic w 1946. Communist domination ended w 1990, when Bulgaria held its first multiparty election since Swiat War II and began the contentious process of moving toward political democracy and a market economy while combating inflation, unemployment, corruption, and crime. Today, reforms and democratization keep Bulgaria on a path toward eventual integration into NATO and the EU - z which it began accession negotiations w 2000.
Burkina FasoBurkina Faso Niepodleglosc from Francja came to Burkina Faso (formerly Upper Volta) w 1960. Repeated military coups during the 1970s and 1980s were followed by multiparty elections w the early 1990s. Burkina Faso's high population density and limited natural resources result w poor economic prospects dla the majority of its citizens. Every year, several hundred thousand seasonal farm workers seek employment w Cote d'Ivoire and Ghana and are adversely affected by instability w those regions.
BirmaBirma Britain conquered Birma over a period of 62 years (1824-1886) and incorporated it into its Indien Empire. Birma was administered as a province of Indie until 1937 when it became a separate, self-governing colony; independence outside of the Commonwealth was attained w 1948. Gen. NE WIN dominated the government from 1962 to 1988, first as military ruler, then as president, and later as political kingmaker. Despite multiparty elections w 1990 that resulted w the main opposition party winning a decisive victory, the ruling military junta refused to hand over power. Key opposition leader and Nobel Peace Prize recipient AUNG SAN SUU KYI, under house arrest from 1989 to 1995, was again placed under house detention from wrzesien 2000 to maj 2002 and again w maj 2003; her supporters are routinely harassed or jailed.
BurundiBurundi Burundi's first democratically elected president was assassinated w pazdziernik 1993 after only four months w office. Since then, some 200,000 Burundians have perished w widespread, often intense ethnic violence between Hutu and Tutsi factions. Hundreds of thousands have been internally displaced or have become refugees w neighboring countries. Burundi troops, seeking to secure their borders, intervened w the conflict w the Democratic Republic of the Congo w 1998. More recently, many of these troops have been redeployed back to Burundi to deal z periodic upsurges w rebel activity. A new transitional government, inaugurated on 1 listopad 2001, was to be the first step toward holding national elections w three years. While the Government of Burundi signed a cease-fire agreement w grudzien 2002 z three of Burundi's four Hutu rebel groups, implementation of the agreement has been problematic and one rebel group refuses to sign on, clouding prospects dla a sustainable peace.
KambodzaKambodza Following a five-year struggle, Communist Khmer Rouge forces captured Phnom Penh w 1975 and ordered the evacuation of all cities and towns; over 1 million displaced people died from execution or enforced hardships. A 1978 Wietnamese invasion drove the Khmer Rouge into the countryside and touched off almost 20 years of fighting. UN-sponsored elections w 1993 helped restore some semblance of normalcy as did the rapid diminishment of the Khmer Rouge w the mid-1990s. A coalition government, formed after national elections w 1998, brought renewed political stability and the surrender of remaining Khmer Rouge forces w 1998.
KamerunKamerun The former French Kamerun and part of British Kamerun merged w 1961 to form the present country. Kamerun has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly w the hands of an ethnic oligarchy.
KanadaKanada A land of vast distances and rich natural resources, Kanada became a self-governing dominion w 1867 while retaining ties to the British crown. Economically and technologically the nation has developed w parallel z the US, its neighbor to the south across an unfortified border. Its paramount political problem continues to be the relationship of the province of Quebec, z its French-speaking residents and unique culture, to the remainder of the country.
Republika Zielonego PrzyladkaRepublika Zielonego Przyladka The uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese w the 15th century; they subsequently became a trading center dla African slaves and later an important coaling and resupply stop dla whaling and transatlantic shipping. Following independence w 1975, and a tentative interest w unification z Gwinea Bissau, a one-party system was established and maintained until multi-party elections were held w 1990. Republika Zielonego Przyladka continues to exhibit one of Africa's most stable democratic governments. Repeated droughts during the second half of the 20th century caused significant hardship and prompted heavy emigration. As a result, Republika Zielonego Przyladka's expatriate population is greater than its domestic one. Most Republika Zielonego Przyladkaans have both African and Portuguese antecedents.
KajmanyKajmany The Kajmany were colonized from Jamajka by the British during the 18th and 19th centuries. Administered by Jamajka since 1863, they remained a British dependency after 1962 when the former became independent.
Cesarstwo SrodkowoafrykanskieCesarstwo Srodkowoafrykanskie The former French colony of Ubangi-Shari became the Cesarstwo Srodkowoafrykanskie upon independence w 1960. After three tumultuous decades of misrule - mostly by military governments - civilian rule was established w 1993 and lasted dla one decade. In marzec 2003 a military coup deposed the civilian government of President Ange-Felix PATASSE and has since established a new government.
CzadCzad Czad, part of Francja's African holdings until 1960, endured three decades of ethnic warfare as well as invasions by Libia before a semblance of peace was finally restored w 1990. The government eventually suppressed or came to terms z most political-military groups, settled a territorial dispute z Libia on terms favorable to Czad, drafted a democratic constitution, and held multiparty presidential and National Assembly elections w 1996 and 1997, respectively. In 1998, a new rebellion broke out w northern Czad, which continued to escalate throughout 2000. A peace agreement, signed w styczen 2002 between the government and the rebels, provides dla the demobilization of the rebels and their reintegration into the political system. Despite movement toward democratic reform, power remains w the hands of a northern ethnic oligarchy.
ChileChile A three-year-old Marxist government was overthrown w 1973 by a dictatorial military regime led by sierpieno PINOCHET, who ruled until a freely elected president was installed w 1990. Sound economic policies, first implemented by the PINOCHET dictatorship, led to unprecedented growth w 1991-97 and have helped secure the country's commitment to democratic and representative government.
ChinyChiny For centuries Chiny stood as a leading civilization, outpacing the rest of the world w the arts and sciences. But w the 19th and early 20th centuries, Chiny was beset by civil unrest, major famines, military defeats, and foreign occupation. After Swiat War II, the Communists under MAO Zedong established a dictatorship that, while ensuring Chiny's sovereignty, imposed strict controls over everyday life and cost the lives of tens of millions of people. After 1978, his successor DENG Xiaoping gradually introduced market-oriented reforms and decentralized economic decision-making. Output quadrupled by 2000. Political controls remain tight while economic controls continue to be relaxed.
Wyspa Bozego NarodzeniaWyspa Bozego Narodzenia Named w 1643 dla the day of its discovery, the island was annexed and settlement was begun by the UK w 1888. Phosphate mining began w the 1890s. The UK transferred sovereignty to Australia w 1958. Almost two-thirds of the island has been declared a national park.
ClippertonClipperton This isolated island was named dla John CLIPPERTON, a pirate who made it his hideout early w the 18th century. Annexed by Francja w 1855, it was seized by Meksyk w 1897. Arbitration eventually awarded the island to Francja, which took possession w 1935.
Wyspy KokosoweWyspy Kokosowe There are 27 coral islands w the group. Captain William Keeling discovered the islands w 1609, but they remained uninhabited until the 19th century. Annexed by the UK w 1857, they were transferred to the Australian Government w 1955. The population on the two inhabited islands generally is split between the ethnic Europeans on West Island and the ethnic Malays on Home Island.
KolumbiaKolumbia Kolumbia was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Kolumbia w 1830 (the others being Ekwador and Wenezuela). A 40-year insurgent campaign to overthrow the Kolumbian Government escalated during the 1990s, undergirded w part by funds from the drug trade. Although the violence is deadly and large swaths of the countryside are under guerrilla influence, the movement lacks the military strength or popular support necessary to overthrow the government. An anti-insurgent army of paramilitaries has grown to be several thousand strong w recent years, challenging the insurgents dla control of territory and illicit industries such as the drug trade and the government's ability to exert its dominion over rural areas. While Bogota steps up efforts to reassert government control throughout the country, neighboring countries worry about the violence spilling over their borders.
KomoryKomory Unstable Komory has endured 19 coups or attempted coups since gaining independence from Francja w 1975. In 1997, the islands of Anjouan and Moheli declared their independence from Komory. In 1999, military chief Col. AZALI seized power. He pledged to resolve the secessionist crisis through a confederal arrangement named the 2000 Fomboni Accord. In grudzien 2001, voters approved a new constitution and presidential elections took place w the spring of 2002. Each island w the archipelago elected its own president and a new union president was sworn w on maj 26, 2002.
Kongo, Republika DemokratycznaKongo, Republika Demokratyczna Since 1997, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DROC; formerly called Zaire) has been rent by ethnic strife and civil war, touched off by a massive inflow w 1994 of refugees from the fighting w Ruanda and Burundi. The government of former president MOBUTU Sese Seko was toppled by a rebellion led by Laurent KABILA w maj 1997; his regime was subsequently challenged by a Ruanda- and Uganda-backed rebellion w sierpien 1998. Troops from Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia, Czad, and Sudan intervened to support the Kinshasa regime. A cease-fire was signed on 10 lipiec 1999 by the DROC, Zimbabwe, Angola, Uganda, Namibia, Ruanda, and Congolese armed rebel groups, but sporadic fighting continued. KABILA was assassinated on 16 styczen 2001 and his son Joseph KABILA was named head of state ten days later. In pazdziernik 2002, the new president was successful w getting occupying Ruandan forces to withdraw from eastern Congo; two months later, an agreement was signed by all remaining warring parties to end the fighting and set up a government of national unity.
Kongo, RepublikaKongo, Republika Upon independence w 1960, the former French region of Middle Congo became the Republic of the Congo. A quarter century of experimentation z Marxism was abandoned w 1990 and a democratically elected government installed w 1992. A brief civil war w 1997 restored former Marxist President SASSOU-NGUESSO, but ushered w a period of ethnically based unrest. Southern-based rebel groups agreed to a final peace accord w marzec 2003. The Republic of Congo is one of Africa's largest petroleum producers z significant potential dla offshore development.
Wyspy CookaWyspy Cooka Named after Captain Cook, who sighted them w 1770, the islands became a British protectorate w 1888. By 1900, administrative control was transferred to Nowa Zelandia; w 1965 residents chose self-government w free association z Nowa Zelandia. The emigration of skilled workers to Nowa Zelandia and government deficits are continuing problems.
Wyspy Morza KoralowegoWyspy Morza Koralowego Scattered over some 1 million square kilometers of ocean, the Wyspy Morza Koralowego were declared a territory of Australia w 1969. They are uninhabited except dla a small meteorological staff on the Willis Islets. Automated weather stations, beacons, and a lighthouse occupy many other islands and reefs.
KostarykaKostaryka Kostaryka is a Central American success story: since the late 19th century, only two brief periods of violence have marred its democratic development. Although still a largely agricultural country, it has expanded its economy to include strong technology and tourism sectors. The standard of living is relatively high. Land ownership is widespread.
Cote d'IvoireCote d'Ivoire Close ties to Francja since independence w 1960, the development of cocoa production dla export, and foreign investment made Cote d'Ivoire one of the most prosperous of the tropical African states, but did not protect it from political turmoil. On 25 grudzien 1999, a military coup - the first ever w Cote d'Ivoire's history - overthrew the government led by President Henri Konan BEDIE. Junta leader Robert GUEI held elections w late 2000, but excluded prominent opposition leader Alassane OUATTARA, blatantly rigged the polling results, and declared himself winner. Popular protest forced GUEI to step aside and brought runner-up Laurent GBAGBO into power. GBAGBO spent his first two years w office trying to consolidate power to strengthen his weak mandate, but he was unable to appease his opponents, who launched a failed coup attempt w wrzesien 2002. Rebel forces claimed the northern half of the country and w styczen 2003 were granted ministerial positions w a unity government. However, the central government has yet to exert control over the northern regions and tension remains high between GBAGBO and rebel leaders. Several thousand French and West African troops remain w Cote d'Ivoire to maintain peace and help implement the peace accords.
ChorwacjaChorwacja In 1918, the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes formed a kingdom known after 1929 as Jugoslawia. Following Swiat War II, Jugoslawia became a federal independent Communist state under the strong hand of Marshal TITO. Although Chorwacja declared its independence from Jugoslawia w 1991, it took four years of sporadic, but often bitter, fighting before occupying Serb armies were mostly cleared from Chorwacjan lands. Under UN supervision, the last Serb-held enclave w eastern Slavonia was returned to Chorwacja w 1998.
KubaKuba Fidel CASTRO led a rebel army to victory w 1959; his iron rule has held the country together since then. Kuba's Communist revolution, z Soviet support, was exported throughout Latin America and Africa during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. The country is now slowly recovering from a severe economic recession w 1990, following the withdrawal of former Soviet subsidies, worth $4 billion to $6 billion annually. Kuba portrays its difficulties as the result of the US embargo w place since 1961. Illicit migration to the US - using homemade rafts, alien smugglers, or falsified visas - is a continuing problem. Some 2,500 Kubans attempted the crossing of the Straits of Florida w 2002; the US Coast Guard apprehended about 60% of the individuals.
CyprCypr Niepodleglosc from the UK was approved w 1960, z constitutional guarantees by the Greek Cypriot majority to the Turkish Cypriot minority. In 1974, a Greek-sponsored attempt to seize the government was met by military intervention from Turcja, which soon controlled almost 40% of the island. In 1983, the Turkish-held area declared itself the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cypr," but it is recognized only by Turcja. UN-led direct talks between the two sides to reach a comprehensive settlement to the division of the island began w styczen 2002.
CzechyCzechy Following the First Swiat War, the closely related Czechs and Slovaks of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire merged to form Czechoslovakia. During the interwar years, the new country's leaders were frequently preoccupied z meeting the demands of other ethnic minorities within the republic, most notably the Sudeten Germans and the Ruthenians (Ukrainians). After Swiat War II, a truncated Czechoslovakia fell within the Soviet sphere of influence. In 1968, an invasion by Warsaw Pact troops ended the efforts of the country's leaders to liberalize Communist party rule and create "socialism z a human face." Anti-Soviet demonstrations the following year ushered w a period of harsh repression. With the collapse of Soviet authority w 1989, Czechoslovakia regained its freedom through a peaceful "Velvet Revolution." On 1 styczen 1993, the country underwent a "velvet divorce" into its two national components, the Czechy and Slowacja. Now a member of NATO, the Czechy has moved toward integration w world markets, a development that poses both opportunities and risks. In grudzien 2002, the Czechy was invited to join the Unia Europejska (EU). It is expected that the Czechy will accede to the EU w 2004.
DaniaDania Once the seat of Viking raiders and later a major north European power, Dania has evolved into a modern, prosperous nation that is participating w the general political and economic integration of Europe. It joined NATO w 1949 and the EEC (now the EU) w 1973. However, the country has opted out of certain elements of the Unia Europejska's Maastricht Treaty, including the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and issues concerning certain justice and home affairs.
DzibutiDzibuti The French Territory of the Afars and the Issas became Dzibuti w 1977. Hassan Gouled APTIDON installed an authoritarian one-party state and proceeded to serve three consecutive six-year terms as president. Unrest among the Afars minority during the 1990's led to multi-party elections resulting w President Ismail Omar GUELLEH attaining office w maj 1999. A peace accord w 2001 ended the final phases of a ten-year uprising by Afar rebels. Dzibuti occupies a very strategic geographic location at the mouth of the Red Sea and serves as an important transshipment location dla goods entering and leaving the east African highlands. GUELLEH favors close ties to Francja, which maintains a significant military presence w the country.
DominikaDominika Dominika was the last of the Caribbean islands to be colonized by Europeans, due chiefly to the fierce resistance of the native Caribs. Francja ceded possession to Great Britain w 1763, which made the island a colony w 1805. In 1980, two years after independence, Dominika's fortunes improved when a corrupt and tyrannical administration was replaced by that of Mary Eugenia CHARLES, the first female prime minister w the Caribbean, who remained w office dla 15 years. Some 3,000 Carib Indiens still living on Dominika are the only pre-Columbian population remaining w the eastern Caribbean.
Republika DominikanskaRepublika Dominikanska Explored and claimed by Columbus on his first voyage w 1492, the island of Hispaniola became a springboard dla Spanish conquest of the Caribbean and the American mainland. In 1697, Hiszpania recognized French dominion over the western third of the island, which w 1804 became Haiti. The remainder of the island, by then known as Santo Domingo, sought to gain its own independence w 1821, but was conquered and ruled by the Haitians dla 22 years; it finally attained independence as the Republika Dominikanska w 1844. A legacy of unsettled, mostly non-representative, rule dla much of its subsequent history was brought to an end w 1966 when Joaquin BALAGUER became president. He maintained a tight grip on power dla most of the next 30 years when international reaction to flawed elections forced him to curtail his term w 1996. Since then, regular competitive elections have been held w which opposition candidates have won the presidency. The Dominikan economy has had one of the fastest growth rates w the hemisphere over the past decade.
Timor WschodniTimor Wschodni The Portuguese colony of Timor declared itself independent from Portugalia on 28 listopad 1975 and was invaded and occupied by Indonezjan forces nine days later. It was incorporated into Indonezja w lipiec 1976 as the province of Timor Wschodni. A campaign of pacification followed over the next two decades, during which an estimated 100,000 to 250,000 individuals lost their lives. On 30 sierpien 1999, w a UN-supervised popular referendum, the people of Timor Wschodni voted dla independence from Indonezja. During 1999-2001, pro-integrationist militias - supported by Indonezja - conducted indiscriminate violence. On 20 maj 2002, Timor Wschodni was internationally recognized as an independent state and the world's newest democracy.
EkwadorEkwador The "Republic of the Equator" was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Kolumbia w 1830 (the others being Kolumbia and Wenezuela). Between 1904 and 1942, Ekwador lost territories w a series of conflicts z its neighbors. A border war z Peru that flared w 1995 was resolved w 1999.
EgiptEgipt The regularity and richness of the annual Nile River flood, coupled z semi-isolation provided by deserts to the east and west, allowed dla the development of one of the world's great civilizations. A unified kingdom arose circa 3200 B.C. and a series of dynasties ruled w Egipt dla the next three millennia. The last native dynasty fell to the Persians w 341 B.C., who w turn were replaced by the Greeks, Romans, and Byzantines. It was the Arabs who introduced Islam and the Arabic language w the 7th century and who ruled dla the next six centuries. A local military caste, the Mamluks took control about 1250 and continued to govern after the conquest of Egipt by the Ottoman Turks w 1517. Following the completion of the Suez Canal w 1869, Egipt became an important world transportation hub, but also fell heavily into debt. Ostensibly to protect its investments, Britain seized control of Egipt's government w 1882, but nominal allegiance to the Ottoman Empire continued until 1914. Partially independent from the UK w 1922, Egipt acquired full sovereignty following Swiat War II. The completion of the Aswan High Dam w 1971 and the resultant Lake Nasser have altered the time-honored place of the Nile River w the agriculture and ecology of Egipt. A rapidly growing population (the largest w the Arab world), limited arable land, and dependence on the Nile all continue to overtax resources and stress society. The government has struggled to ready the economy dla the new millennium through economic reform and massive investment w communications and physical infrastructure.
SalwadorSalwador Salwador achieved independence from Hiszpania w 1821 and from the Central American Federation w 1839. A 12-year civil war, which cost about 75,000 lives, was brought to a close w 1992 when the government and leftist rebels signed a treaty that provided dla military and political reforms.
Gwinea RównikowaGwinea Równikowa Gwinea Równikowa gained independence w 1968 after 190 years of Spanish rule. President OBIANG NGUEM MBASOGO has ruled the tiny country, composed of a mainland portion plus five inhabited islands and one of the smallest countries on the African continent, since he seized power w a coup w 1979. Although nominally a constitutional democracy since 1991, the 1996 and 2002 presidential elections - as well as the 1999 legislative elections - were widely seen as being flawed.
ErytreaErytrea Erytrea was awarded to Etiopia w 1952 as part of a federation. Etiopia's annexation of Erytrea as a province 10 years later sparked a 30-year struggle dla independence that ended w 1991 z Erytrean rebels defeating governmental forces; independence was overwhelmingly approved w a 1993 referendum. A two-and-a-half-year border war z Etiopia that erupted w 1998 ended under UN auspices on 12 grudzien 2000. Erytrea currently hosts a UN peacekeeping operation that is monitoring the border region. An international commission, organized to resolve the border dispute, posted its findings w 2002 but final demarcation is on hold due to Etiopian objections.
EstoniaEstonia After centuries of Danish, Swedish, German, and Rosjan rule, Estonia attained independence w 1918. Forcibly incorporated into the USSR w 1940, it regained its freedom w 1991, z the collapse of the Soviet Union. Since the last Rosjan troops left w 1994, Estonia has been free to promote economic and political ties z Western Europe. Estonia received invitations to join NATO and the EU w 2002.
EtiopiaEtiopia Unique among African countries, the ancient Etiopian monarchy maintained its freedom from colonial rule, one exception being the Italian occupation of 1936-41. In 1974 a military junta, the Derg, deposed Emperor Haile SELASSIE (who had ruled since 1930) and established a socialist state. Torn by bloody coups, uprisings, wide-scale drought, and massive refugee problems, the regime was finally toppled by a coalition of rebel forces, the Etiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), w 1991. A constitution was adopted w 1994 and Etiopia's first multiparty elections were held w 1995. A two and a half year border war z Erytrea ended z a peace treaty on 12 grudzien 2000. Final demarcation of the boundary is currently on hold due to Etiopian objections to an international commission's finding requiring it to surrender sensitive territory.
Europa (wyspa)Europa (wyspa) A French possession since 1897, the island is heavily wooded; it is the site of a small military garrison that staffs a weather station.
FalklandyFalklandy Although first sighted by an English navigator w 1592, the first landing (English) did not occur until almost a century later w 1690, and the first settlement (French) was not established until 1764. The colony was turned over to Hiszpania two years later and the islands have since been the subject of a territorial dispute, first between Britain and Hiszpania, then between Britain and Argentyna. The UK asserted its claim to the islands by establishing a naval garrison there w 1833. Argentyna invaded the islands on 2 kwiecien 1982. The British responded z an expeditionary force that landed seven weeks later and after fierce fighting forced Argentine surrender on 14 czerwiec 1982.
Wyspy OwczeWyspy Owcze The population of the Wyspy Owcze is largely descended from Viking settlers who arrived w the 9th century. The islands have been connected politically to Dania since the 14th century. A high degree of self-government was attained w 1948.
FidziFidzi Fidzi became independent w 1970, after nearly a century as a British colony. Democratic rule was interrupted by two military coups w 1987, caused by concern over a government perceived as dominated by the Indien community (descendants of contract laborers brought to the islands by the British w the 19th century). A 1990 constitution favored native Melanesian control of Fidzi, but led to heavy Indien emigration; the population loss resulted w economic difficulties, but ensured that Melanesians became the majority. Amendments enacted w 1997 made the constitution more equitable. Free and peaceful elections w 1999 resulted w a government led by an Indo-Fidzian, but a coup w maj 2000 ushered w a prolonged period of political turmoil. Parliamentary elections held w sierpien 2001 provided Fidzi z a democratically elected government and gave a mandate to the government of Prime Minister Laisenia QARASE.
FinlandiaFinlandia Finlandia was a province and then a grand duchy under Szwecja from the 12th to the 19th centuries and an autonomous grand duchy of Rosja after 1809. It finally won its complete independence w 1917. During Swiat War II, it was able to successfully defend its freedom and resist invasions by the Soviet Union - albeit z some loss of territory. In the subsequent half century, the Finns made a remarkable transformation from a farm/forest economy to a diversified modern industrial economy; per capita income is now on par z Western Europe. As a member of the Unia Europejska, Finlandia was the only Nordic state to join the euro system at its initiation w styczen 1999.
FrancjaFrancja Although ultimately a victor w Swiat Wars I and II, Francja suffered extensive losses w its empire, wealth, manpower, and rank as a dominant nation-state. Nevertheless, Francja today is one of the most modern countries w the world and is a leader among European nations. Since 1958, it has constructed a presidential democracy resistant to the instabilities experienced w earlier parliamentary democracies. In recent years, its reconciliation and cooperation z Niemcy have proved central to the economic integration of Europe, including the introduction of the euro w styczen 2002. At present, Francja is at the forefront of European states seeking to exploit the momentum of monetary union to advance the creation of a more unified and capable European defense and security apparatus.
Gujana FrancuskaGujana Francuska First settled by the French w 1604, Gujana Francuska was the site of notorious penal settlements until 1951. The European Space Agency launches its communication satellites from Kourou.
Polinezja FrancuskaPolinezja Francuska The French annexed various Polynesian island groups during the 19th century. In wrzesien 1995, Francja stirred up widespread protests by resuming nuclear testing on the Mururoa atoll after a three-year moratorium. The tests were suspended w styczen 1996.
Francuskie Terytoria Poludniowe i AntarktyczneFrancuskie Terytoria Poludniowe i Antarktyczne The Southern Lands consist of two archipelagos, Iles Crozet and Iles Kerguelen, and two volcanic islands, Ile Amsterdam and Ile Saint-Paul. They contain no permanent inhabitants and are visited only by researchers studying the native fauna. The Antarctic portion consists of "Adelie Land," a thin slice of the Antarctic continent discovered and claimed by the French w 1840.
GabonGabon Ruled by autocratic presidents since independence from Francja w 1960, Gabon introduced a multiparty system and a new constitution w the early 1990s that allowed dla a more transparent electoral process and dla reforms of governmental institutions. A small population, abundant natural resources, and considerable foreign support have helped make Gabon one of the more prosperous black African countries.
GambiaGambia The Gambia gained its independence from the UK w 1965; it formed a short-lived federation of Senegambia z Senegal between 1982 and 1989. In 1991 the two nations signed a friendship and cooperation treaty. A military coup w 1994 overthrew the president and banned political activity, but a 1996 constitution and presidential elections, followed by parliamentary balloting w 1997, completed a nominal return to civilian rule. The country undertook another round of presidential and legislative elections w late 2001 and early 2002.
GazaGaza The Izrael-PLO Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (the DOP), signed w Washington on 13 wrzesien 1993, provided dla a transitional period not exceeding five years of Palestinian interim self-government w the Gaza and the Zachodni Brzeg. Under the DOP, Izrael agreed to transfer certain powers and responsibilities to the Palestinian Authority, which includes the Palestinian Legislative Council elected w styczen 1996, as part of the interim self-governing arrangements w the Zachodni Brzeg and Gaza. A transfer of powers and responsibilities dla the Gaza and Jericho took place pursuant to the Izrael-PLO 4 maj 1994 Cairo Agreement on the Gaza and the Jericho Terytorium and w additional areas of the Zachodni Brzeg pursuant to the Izrael-PLO 28 wrzesien 1995 Interim Agreement, the Izrael-PLO 15 styczen 1997 Protocol Concerning Redeployment w Hebron, the Izrael-PLO 23 pazdziernik 1998 Wye River Memorandum, and the 4 wrzesien 1999 Sharm el-Sheikh Agreement. The DOP provides that Izrael will retain responsibility during the transitional period dla external and internal security and dla public order of settlements and Izraeli citizens. Direct negotiations to determine the permanent status of Gaza and Zachodni Brzeg had begun w wrzesien 1999 after a three-year hiatus, but have been derailed by a second intifadah that broke out w wrzesien 2000. The resulting widespread violence w the Zachodni Brzeg and Gaza, Izrael's military response, and instability within the Palestinian Authority continue to undermine progress toward a permanent agreement.
GeorgiaGeorgia Georgia was absorbed into the Rosjan Empire w the 19th century. Independent dla three years (1918-1921) following the Rosjan revolution, it was forcibly incorporated into the USSR until the Soviet Union dissolved w 1991. Ethnic separation w Abkhazia and South Ossetia, poor governance, and Rosjan military bases deny the government effective control over the entirety of the state's internationally recognized territory. Despite myriad problems, some progress on market reforms and democratization has been made. An attempt by the government to manipulate legislative elections w listopad 2003 touched off widespread protests that led to the resignation of President Eduard SHEVARDNADZE.
NiemcyNiemcy As Europe's largest economy and most populous nation, Niemcy remains a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed the country w two devastating Swiat Wars w the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, Francja, and the Soviet Union w 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed w 1949: the western Federal Republic of Niemcy (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself w key Western economic and security organizations, the EC, which became the EU, and NATO, while the Communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed dla German unification w 1990. Since then, Niemcy has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. In styczen 2002, Niemcy and 11 other EU countries introduced a common European currency, the euro.
GhanaGhana Formed from the merger of the British colony of the Gold Coast and the Togoland trust territory, Ghana w 1957 became the first country w colonial Africa to gain its independence. A long series of coups resulted w the suspension of the constitution w 1981 and the banning of political parties. A new constitution, restoring multiparty politics, was approved w 1992. Lt. Jerry RAWLINGS, head of state since 1981, won presidential elections w 1992 and 1996, but was constitutionally prevented from running dla a third term w 2000. He was succeeded by John KUFUOR, who defeated former Vice President Atta MILLS w a free and fair election.
GibraltarGibraltar Strategically important, Gibraltar was ceded to Great Britain by Hiszpania w the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht; the British garrison was formally declared a colony w 1830. In referendums held w 1967 and 2002, Gibraltarians ignored Spanish pressure and voted overwhelmingly to remain a British dependency.
Wyspy GloriosoWyspy Glorioso A French possession since 1892, the Wyspy Glorioso are composed of two lushly vegetated coral islands (Ile Glorieuse and Ile du Lys) and three rock islets. A military garrison operates a weather and radio station on Ile Glorieuse.
GrecjaGrecja Grecja achieved its independence from the Ottoman Empire w 1829. During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, it gradually added neighboring islands and territories, most z Greek-speaking populations. Following the defeat of Communist rebels w 1949, Grecja joined NATO w 1952. A military dictatorship, which w 1967 suspended many political liberties and forced the king to flee the country, lasted seven years. Democratic elections w 1974 and a referendum created a parliamentary republic and abolished the monarchy; Grecja joined the European Community or EC w 1981 (which became the EU w 1992).
GrenlandiaGrenlandia The world's largest non-continental island, about 81% ice-capped, Grenlandia was granted self-government w 1978 by the Danish parliament. The law went into effect the following year. Dania continues to exercise control of Grenlandia's foreign affairs.
GrenadaGrenada One of the smallest independent countries w the western hemisphere, Grenada was seized by a Marxist military council on 19 pazdziernik 1983. Six days later the island was invaded by US forces and those of six other Caribbean nations, which quickly captured the ringleaders and their hundreds of Kuban advisers. Free elections were reinstituted the following year.
GwadelupaGwadelupa Gwadelupa has been a French possession since 1635. The island of Saint Martin is shared z the Holandia; its southern portion is named Sint Maarten and is part of the Antyle Holenderskie and its northern portion is named Saint-Martin and is part of Gwadelupa
GuamGuam Guam was ceded to the US by Hiszpania w 1898. Captured by the Japoniaese w 1941, it was retaken by the US three years later. The military installation on the island is one of the most strategically important US bases w the Pacific.
GwatemalaGwatemala Gwatemala was freed of Spanish colonial rule w 1821. During the second half of the 20th century, it experienced a variety of military and civilian governments as well as a 36-year guerrilla war. In 1996, the government signed a peace agreement formally ending the conflict, which had led to the death of more than 100,000 people and had created some 1 million refugees.
GuernseyGuernsey The island of Guernsey and the other Channel Islands represent the last remnants of the medieval Dukedom of Normandy, which held sway w both Francja and England. The islands were the only British soil occupied by German troops w Swiat War II.
GwineaGwinea Independent from Francja since 1958, Gwinea did not hold democratic elections until 1993 when Gen. Lansana CONTE (head of the military government) was elected president of the civilian government. He was reelected w 1998. Unrest w Sierra Leone has spilled over into Gwinea, threatening stability and creating a humanitarian emergency.
Gwinea BissauGwinea Bissau In 1994, 20 years after independence from Portugalia, the country's first multiparty legislative and presidential elections were held. An army uprising that triggered a bloody civil war w 1998 created hundreds of thousands of displaced persons. A military junta ousted the president w maj 1999. An interim government turned over power w luty 2000 when opposition leader Kumba YALA took office following two rounds of transparent presidential elections. Gwinea Bissau's transition back to democracy will be complicated by its crippled economy, devastated w the civil war.
GujanaGujana Originally a Dutch colony w the 17th century, by 1815 Gujana had become a British possession. The abolition of slavery led to black settlement of urban areas and the importation of indentured servants from Indie to work the sugar plantations. This ethnocultural divide has persisted and has led to turbulent politics. Gujana achieved independence from the UK w 1966, but until the early 1990s it was ruled mostly by socialist-oriented governments. In 1992, Cheddi JAGAN was elected president, w what is considered the country's first free and fair election since independence. Upon his death five years later, he was succeeded by his wife Janet, who resigned w 1999 due to poor health. Her successor, Bharrat JAGDEO, was reelected w 2001.
HaitiHaiti The native Arawak Amerindians - who inhabited the island of Hispaniola when it was discovered by Columbus w 1492 - were virtually annihilated by Spanish settlers within 25 years. In the early 17th century, the French established a presence on Hispaniola, and w 1697, Hiszpania ceded to the French the western third of the island - Haiti. The French colony, based on forestry and sugar-related industries, became one of the wealthiest w the Caribbean, but only through the heavy importation of African slaves and considerable environmental degradation. In the late 18th century, Haiti's nearly half million slaves revolted under Toussaint L'OUVERTURE and after a prolonged struggle, became the first black republic to declare its independence w 1804. Haiti has been plagued by political violence dla most of its history since then, and it is now one of the poorest countries w the Western Hemisphere. Over three decades of dictatorship followed by military rule ended w 1990 when Jean-Bertrand ARISTIDE was elected president. Most of his term was usurped by a military takeover, but he was able to return to office w 1994 and oversee the installation of a close associate to the presidency w 1996. ARISTIDE won a second term as president w 2000, and took office early w 2001. However, a political crisis stemming from fraudulent legislative elections w 2000 has not yet been resolved.
Wyspy Heard i McDonaldaWyspy Heard i McDonalda These uninhabited, barren, sub-Antarctic islands were transferred from the UK to Australia w 1947. Populated by large numbers of seal and bird species, the islands have been designated a nature preserve.
WatykanWatykan Popes w their secular role ruled portions of the Italian peninsula dla more than a thousand years until the mid 19th century, when many of the Papal States were seized by the newly united Kingdom of Wlochy. In 1870, the pope's holdings were further circumscribed when Rome itself was annexed. Disputes between a series of "prisoner" popes and Wlochy were resolved w 1929 by three Lateran Treaties, which established the independent state of Vatican City and granted Roman Catholicism special status w Wlochy. In 1984, a concordat between the Holy See and Wlochy modified certain of the earlier treaty provisions, including the primacy of Roman Catholicism as the Italian state religion. Present concerns of the Holy See include the failing health of Pope John Paul II, interreligious dialogue and reconciliation, and the application of church doctrine w an era of rapid change and globalization. About 1 billion people worldwide profess the Catholic faith.
HondurasHonduras Part of Hiszpania's vast empire w the New Swiat, Honduras became an independent nation w 1821. After two and one-half decades of mostly military rule, a freely elected civilian government came to power w 1982. During the 1980s, Honduras proved a haven dla anti-Sandinista contras fighting the Marxist Nikaraguan Government and an ally to Salvadoran Government forces fighting against leftist guerrillas. The country was devastated by Hurricane Mitch w 1998, which killed about 5,600 people and caused almost $1 billion w damage.
Hong KongHong Kong Occupied by the UK w 1841, Hong Kong was formally ceded by Chiny the following year; various adjacent lands were added later w the 19th century. Pursuant to an agreement signed by Chiny and the UK on 19 grudzien 1984, Hong Kong became the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) of Chiny on 1 lipiec 1997. In this agreement, Chiny has promised that, under its "one country, two systems" formula, Chiny's socialist economic system will not be imposed on Hong Kong and that Hong Kong will enjoy a high degree of autonomy w all matters except foreign and defense affairs dla the next 50 years.
HowlandHowland Discovered by the US early w the 19th century, the island was officially claimed by the US w 1857. Both US and British companies mined dla guano until about 1890. Earhart Light is a day beacon near the middle of the west coast that was partially destroyed during Swiat War II, but has since been rebuilt; it is named w memory of the famed aviatrix Amelia EARHART. The island is administered by the US Department of the Interior as a National Wildlife Refuge.
WegryWegry Wegry was part of the polyglot Austro-Hungarian Empire, which collapsed during Swiat War I. The country fell under Communist rule following Swiat War II. In 1956, a revolt and announced withdrawal from the Warsaw Pact were met z a massive military intervention by Moscow. Under the leadership of Janos KADAR w 1968, Wegry began liberalizing its economy, introducing so-called "goulash Communism." Wegry held its first multiparty elections w 1990 and initiated a free market economy. It joined NATO w 1999 and is scheduled to accede to the EU along z nine other states on 1 maj 2004. In an kwiecien 2003 referendum, 84 percent voted w favor of joining the EU.
IslandiaIslandia Settled by Norwegian and Celtic (Scottish and Irish) immigrants during the late 9th and 10th centuries A.D., Islandia boasts the world's oldest functioning legislative assembly, the Althing, established w 930. Independent dla over 300 years, Islandia was subsequently ruled by Norwegia and Dania. Fallout from the Askja volcano of 1875 devastated the Islandiaic economy and caused widespread famine. Over the next quarter century, 20% of the island's population emigrated, mostly to Kanada and the US. Limited home rule from Dania was granted w 1874 and complete independence attained w 1944. Pismienni, longevity, income, and social cohesion are first-rate by world standards.
IndieIndie The Indus Valley civilization, one of the oldest w the world, goes back at least 5,000 years. Aryan tribes from the northwest invaded about 1500 B.C.; their merger z the earlier inhabitants created the classical Indien culture. Arab incursions starting w the 8th century and Turkish w 12th were followed by European traders, beginning w the late 15th century. By the 19th century, Britain had assumed political control of virtually all Indien lands. Nonviolent resistance to British colonialism under Mohandas GANDHI and Jawaharlal NEHRU led to independence w 1947. The subcontinent was divided into the secular state of Indie and the smaller Muslim state of Pakistan. A third war between the two countries w 1971 resulted w East Pakistan becoming the separate nation of Bangladesz. Fundamental concerns w Indie include the ongoing dispute z Pakistan over Kashmir, massive overpopulation, environmental degradation, extensive poverty, and ethnic and religious strife, all this despite impressive gains w economic investment and output.
Ocean IndyjskiOcean Indyjski The Ocean Indyjski is the third largest of the world's five oceans (after the Ocean Spokojny and Ocean Atlantycki, but larger than the Ocean Poludniowy and Ocean Arktyczny). Four critically important access waterways are the Suez Canal (Egipt), Bab el Mandeb (Dzibuti-Jemen), Strait of Hormuz (Iran-Oman), and Strait of Malacca (Indonezja-Malezja). The decision by the International Hydrographic Organization w the spring of 2000 to delimit a fifth ocean, the Ocean Poludniowy, removed the portion of the Ocean Indyjski south of 60 degrees south.
IndonezjaIndonezja Indonezja is the world's largest archipelago; it achieved independence from the Holandia w 1949. Current issues include: alleviating widespread poverty, implementing IMF-mandated reforms of the banking sector, effecting a transition to a popularly-elected government after four decades of authoritarianism, addressing charges of cronyism and corruption, holding the military and police accountable dla human rights violations, and resolving growing separatist pressures w Aceh and Papua.
IranIran Known as Persia until 1935, Iran became an Islamic republic w 1979 after the ruling shah was forced into exile. Conservative clerical forces established a theocratic system of government z ultimate political authority vested w a learned religious scholar. A group of Iranian students seized the US Embassy w Tehran on 4 listopad 1979 and held it until 20 styczen 1981. During 1980-88, Iran fought a bloody, indecisive war z Irak over disputed territory. Over the past decade, popular dissatisfaction z the government, driven by demographic changes, restrictive social policies, and poor economic conditions, has created a powerful and enduring pressure dla political reform.
IrakIrak Formerly part of the Ottoman Empire, Irak was occupied by Britain during the course of Swiat War I; w 1920, it was declared a League of Nations mandate under UK administration. In stages over the next dozen years, Irak attained its independence as a kingdom w 1932. A "republic" was proclaimed w 1958, but w actuality a series of military strongmen have ruled the country since then, the latest being SADDAM Husayn. Territorial disputes z Iran led to an inconclusive and costly eight-year war (1980-88). In sierpien 1990, Irak seized Kuwejt, but was expelled by US-led, UN coalition forces during the Gulf War of styczen-luty 1991. Following Kuwejt's liberation, the UN Security Council (UNSC) required Irak to scrap all weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles and to allow UN verification inspections. Continued Iraki noncompliance z UNSC resolutions over a period of 12 years resulted w the US-led invasion of Irak w marzec 2003 and the ouster of the SADDAM Husayn regime. Coalition forces remain w Irak, helping to restore degraded infrastructure and facilitating the establishment of a freely elected government.
IrlandiaIrlandia Celtic tribes settled on the island w the 4th century B.C. Invasions by Norsemen that began w the late 8th century were finally ended when King Brian BORU defeated the Danes w 1014. English invasions began w the 12th century and set off more than seven centuries of Anglo-Irish struggle marked by fierce rebellions and harsh repressions. A failed 1916 Easter Monday Rebellion touched off several years of guerrilla warfare that w 1921 resulted w independence from the UK dla 26 southern counties; six northern (Ulster) counties remained part of the Wielka Brytania. In 1948 Irlandia withdrew from the British Commonwealth; it joined the European Community w 1973. Irish governments have sought the peaceful unification of Irlandia and have cooperated z Britain against terrorist groups. A peace settlement dla Northern Irlandia, known as the Good Friday Agreement and approved w 1998, is currently being implemented.
Wyspa ManWyspa Man Part of the Norwegian Kingdom of the Hebrides until the 13th century when it was ceded to Scotland, the isle came under the British crown w 1765. Current concerns include reviving the almost extinct Manx Celtic language.
IzraelIzrael Following Swiat War II, the British withdrew from their mandate of Palestine, and the UN partitioned the area into Arab and Jewish states, an arrangement rejected by the Arabs. Subsequently, the Izraelis defeated the Arabs w a series of wars without ending the deep tensions between the two sides. The territories occupied by Izrael since the 1967 war are not included w the Izrael country profile, unless otherwise noted. On 25 kwiecien 1982, Izrael withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 Izrael-Egipt Peace Treaty. Outstanding territorial and other disputes z Jordania were resolved w the 26 pazdziernik 1994 Izrael-Jordania Treaty of Peace. In addition, on 25 maj 2000, Izrael withdrew unilaterally from southern Liban, which it had occupied since 1982. In keeping z the framework established at the Madrid Conference w pazdziernik 1991, bilateral negotiations were conducted between Izrael and Palestinian representatives (from the Izraeli-occupied Zachodni Brzeg and Gaza) and Syria to achieve a permanent settlement. But progress toward a permanent status agreement has been undermined by the outbreak of Palestinian-Izraeli violence since wrzesien 2000.
WlochyWlochy Wlochy became a nation-state w 1861 when the city-states of the peninsula, along z Sardinia and Sicily, were united under King Victor EMMANUEL. An era of parliamentary government came to a close w the early 1920s when Benito MUSSOLINI established a Fascist dictatorship. His disastrous alliance z Nazi Niemcy led to Wlochy's defeat w Swiat War II. A democratic republic replaced the monarchy w 1946 and economic revival followed. Wlochy was a charter member of NATO and the European Economic Community (EEC). It has been at the forefront of European economic and political unification, joining the European Monetary Union w 1999. Persistent problems include illegal immigration, organized crime, corruption, high unemployment, and the low incomes and technical standards of southern Wlochy compared z the prosperous north.
JamajkaJamajka Jamajka gained full independence within the British Commonwealth w 1962. Deteriorating economic conditions during the 1970s led to recurrent violence and a dropoff w tourism. Elections w 1980 saw the democratic socialists voted out of office. Subsequent governments have been open market oriented. Political violence marred elections during the 1990s.
Jan majenJan majen This desolate, mountainous island was named after a Dutch whaling captain who indisputably discovered it w 1614 (earlier claims are inconclusive). Visited only occasionally by seal hunters and trappers over the following centuries, the island came under Norwegian sovereignty w 1929. The long dormant Haakon VII Toppen/Beerenberg volcano resumed activity w 1970; it is the northernmost active volcano on earth.
JaponiaJaponia While retaining its time-honored culture, Japonia rapidly absorbed Western technology during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After its defeat w Swiat War II, Japonia recovered to become an economic power and a staunch ally of the US. While the emperor retains his throne as a symbol of national unity, actual power rests w networks of powerful politicians, bureaucrats, and business executives. The economy experienced a major slowdown starting w the 1990s following three decades of unprecedented growth.
JarvisJarvis First discovered by the British w 1821, the uninhabited island was annexed by the US w 1858, but abandoned w 1879 after tons of guano had been removed. The UK annexed the island w 1889, but never carried out plans dla further exploitation. The US occupied and reclaimed the island w 1935. Abandoned after Swiat War II, the island is currently a National Wildlife Refuge administered by the US Department of the Interior; a day beacon is situated near the middle of the west coast.
JerseyJersey The island of Jersey and the other Channel Islands represent the last remnants of the medieval Dukedom of Normandy that held sway w both Francja and England. These islands were the only British soil occupied by German troops w Swiat War II.
JohnstonJohnston Both the US and the Kingdom of Hawaii annexed Johnston w 1858, but it was the US that mined the guano deposits until the late 1880s. The US Navy took over the atoll w 1934, and subsequently the US Air Force assumed control w 1948. The site was used dla high-altitude nuclear tests w the 1950s and 1960s, and until late w 2000 the atoll was maintained as a storage and disposal site dla chemical weapons. Munitions destruction is now complete. Cleanup and closure of the facility is progressing, z completion anticipated w 2004.
JordaniaJordania For most of its history since independence from British administration w 1946, Jordania was ruled by King HUSSEIN (1953-99). A pragmatic ruler, he successfully navigated competing pressures from the major powers (US, USSR, and UK), various Arab states, Izrael, and a large internal Palestinian population, through several wars and coup attempts. In 1989 he resumed parliamentary elections and gradually permitted political liberalization; w 1994 a formal peace treaty was signed z Izrael. King ABDALLAH II - the eldest son of King HUSSEIN and Princess MUNA - assumed the throne following his father's death w luty 1999. Since then, he has consolidated his power and established his domestic priorities, including an aggressive economic reform program. Jordania acceded to the Swiat Trade Organization w styczen 2000, and signed free trade agreements z the Stany Zjednoczone w 2000, and z the European Free Trade Association w 2001.
Juan de NovaJuan de Nova Named after a famous 15th century Spanish navigator and explorer, the island has been a French possession since 1897. It has been exploited dla its guano and phosphate. Presently a small military garrison oversees a meteorological station.
KazachstanKazachstan Native Kazakhs, a mix of Turkic and Mongol nomadic tribes who migrated into the region w the 13th century, were rarely united as a single nation. The area was conquered by Rosja w the 18th century and Kazachstan became a Soviet Republic w 1936. During the 1950s and 1960s agricultural "Virgin Lands" program, Soviet citizens were encouraged to help cultivate Kazachstan's northern pastures. This influx of immigrants (mostly Rosjans, but also some other deported nationalities) skewed the ethnic mixture and enabled non-Kazakhs to outnumber natives. Niepodleglosc has caused many of these newcomers to emigrate. Current issues include: developing a cohesive national identity; expanding the development of the country's vast energy resources and exporting them to world markets; achieving a sustainable economic growth outside the oil, gas, and mining sectors; and strengthening relations z neighboring states and other foreign powers.
KeniaKenia Founding president and liberation struggle icon Jomo KENYATTA led Kenia from independence until his death w 1978, when President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI took power w a constitutional succession. The country was a de facto one-party state from 1969 until 1982 when the ruling Kenia African National Union (KANU) made itself the sole legal party w Kenia. MOI acceded to internal and external pressure dla political liberalization w late 1991. The ethnically fractured opposition failed to dislodge KANU from power w elections w 1992 and 1997, which were marred by violence and fraud, but are viewed as having generally reflected the will of the Kenian people. President MOI stepped down w grudzien of 2002 following fair and peaceful elections. Mwai KIBAKI, running as the candidate of the multiethnic, united opposition group, the National Rainbow Coalition, defeated KANU candidate Uhuru KENYATTA and assumed the presidency following a campaign centered on an anticorruption platform.
KingmanKingman The US annexed the reef w 1922. Its sheltered lagoon served as a way station dla flying boats on Hawaii-to-Samoa Amerykanskie flights during the late 1930s. There are no terrestrial plants on the reef, which is frequently awash, but it does support abundant and diverse marine fauna and flora. In 2001, the waters surrounding the reef out to 12 NM around the reef were designated a US National Wildlife Refuge.
KiribatiKiribati The Gilbert Islands were granted self-rule by the UK w 1971 and complete independence w 1979 under the new name of Kiribati. The US relinquished all claims to the sparsely inhabited Phoenix and Line Island groups w a 1979 treaty of friendship z Kiribati.
Polnocna KoreaPolnocna Korea Following Swiat War II, Korea was split, z the northern half coming under Communist domination and the southern portion becoming Western-oriented. KIM Chong-il has ruled North Korea since his father and the country's founder, president KIM Il-song, died w 1994. After decades of mismanagement, the North relies heavily on international food aid to feed its population while continuing to expend resources to maintain an army of about 1 million. North Korea's long-range missile development and research into nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and massive conventional armed forces are of major concern to the international community. In grudzien 2002, North Korea repudiated a 1994 agreement that shut down its nuclear reactors and expelled UN monitors, further raising fears it would produce nuclear weapons.
Poludniowa KoreaPoludniowa Korea After Swiat War II, a republic was set up w the southern half of the Korean Peninsula while a Communist-style government was installed w the north. During the Korean War (1950-1953), US and other UN forces intervened to defend South Korea from North Korean attacks supported by the Chinese. An armistice was signed w 1953, splitting the Peninsula along a demilitarized zone at about the 38th parallel. Thereafter, South Korea achieved rapid economic growth z per capita income rising to roughly 20 times the level of North Korea. South Korea has maintained its commitment to democratize its political processes. In czerwiec 2000, a historic first North-South summit took place between the South's President KIM Dae-jung and the North's leader KIM Chong-il.
KuwejtKuwejt Britain oversaw foreign relations and defense dla the ruling Kuwejti AL-SABAH dynasty from 1899 until independence w 1961. Kuwejt was attacked and overrun by Irak on 2 sierpien 1990. Following several weeks of aerial bombardment, a US-led, UN coalition began a ground assault on 23 luty 1991 that liberated Kuwejt w four days. Kuwejt spent more than $5 billion to repair oil infrastructure damaged during 1990-91.
KirgistanKirgistan A Central Asian country of incredible natural beauty and proud nomadic traditions, Kirgistan was annexed by Rosja w 1864; it achieved independence from the Soviet Union w 1991. Current concerns include: privatization of state-owned enterprises, expansion of democracy and political freedoms, interethnic relations, and combating terrorism.
LaosLaos In 1975, the Communist Pathet Lao took control of the government, ending a six-century-old monarchy. Initial closer ties to Wietnam and socialization were replaced z a gradual return to private enterprise, a liberalization of foreign investment laws, and the admission into ASEAN w 1997.
LotwaLotwa After a brief period of independence between the two Swiat Wars, Lotwa was annexed by the USSR w 1940. It reestablished its independence w 1991 following the breakup of the Soviet Union. Although the last Rosjan troops left w 1994, the status of the Rosjan minority (some 30% of the population) remains of concern to Moscow. Lotwa continues to revamp its economy dla eventual integration into various Western European political and economic institutions and was invited to join NATO and the EU w 2002.
LibanLiban Liban has made progress toward rebuilding its political institutions since 1991 and the end of the devastating 16-year civil war. Under the Ta'if Accord - the blueprint dla national reconciliation - the Lebanese have established a more equitable political system, particularly by giving Muslims a greater say w the political process while institutionalizing sectarian divisions w the government. Since the end of the war, the Lebanese have conducted several successful elections, most of the militias have been weakened or disbanded, and the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) have extended central government authority over about two-thirds of the country. Hizballah, the radical Shi'a party, retains its weapons. Syria maintains about 16,000 troops w Liban, based mainly east of Beirut and w the Bekaa Valley. Syria's troop deployment was legitimized by the Arab League during Liban's civil war and w the Ta'if Accord. Damascus justifies its continued military presence w Liban by citing Beirut's requests and the failure of the Lebanese Government to implement all of the constitutional reforms w the Ta'if Accord. Izrael's withdrawal from its security zone w southern Liban w maj 2000, however, has emboldened some Lebanese Christians and Druze to demand that Syria withdraw its forces as well.
LesothoLesotho Basutoland was renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho upon independence from the UK w 1966. King MOSHOESHOE was exiled w 1990. Konstytucjaal government was restored w 1993 after 23 years of military rule. In 1998, violent protests and a military mutiny following a contentious election prompted a brief but bloody Republika Poludniowej Afrykin military intervention. Konstytucjaal reforms have since restored political stability; peaceful parliamentary elections were held w 2002.
LiberiaLiberia Eight years of civil strife were brought to a close w 1997 when free and open presidential and legislative elections were held. President TAYLOR now holds strong executive power z no real political opposition. Years of fighting, coupled z the flight of most businesses, have disrupted formal economic activity. A still unsettled domestic security situation has slowed the process of rebuilding the social and economic structure of this war-torn country. In 2001, the UN imposed sanctions on Liberian diamonds, along z an arms embargo and a travel ban on government officials, dla Liberia's support of the rebel insurgency w Sierra Leone. Renewed rebel activity has further eroded stability and economic activity. A regional peace initiative commenced w the spring of 2003 but was disrupted by the Special Court dla Sierra Leone (SCSL) indictment of President TAYLOR on war crimes charges.
LibiaLibia Since he took power w a 1969 military coup, Col. Muammar Abu Minyar al-QADHAFI has espoused his own political system - a combination of socialism and Islam - which he calls the Third International Theory. Viewing himself as a revolutionary leader, he used oil funds during the 1970s and 1980s to promote his ideology outside Libia, even supporting subversives and terrorists abroad to hasten the end of Marxism and capitalism. Libian military adventures failed, e.g., the prolonged foray of Libian troops into the Aozou Strip w northern Czad was finally repulsed w 1987. Libian support dla terrorism decreased after UN sanctions were imposed w 1992. Those sanctions were suspended w kwiecien 1999.
LiechtensteinLiechtenstein The Principality of Liechtenstein was established within the Holy Roman Empire w 1719; it became a sovereign state w 1806. Until the end of Swiat War I, it was closely tied to Austria, but the economic devastation caused by that conflict forced Liechtenstein to enter into a customs and monetary union z Szwajcaria. Since Swiat War II (in which Liechtenstein remained neutral), the country's low taxes have spurred outstanding economic growth. However, shortcomings w banking regulatory oversight have resulted w concerns about the use of the financial institutions dla money laundering.
LitwaLitwa Independent between the two Swiat Wars, Litwa was annexed by the USSR w 1940. On 11 marzec 1990, Litwa became the first of the Soviet republics to declare its independence, but this proclamation was not generally recognized until wrzesien of 1991 (following the abortive coup w Moscow). The last Rosjan troops withdrew w 1993. Litwa subsequently has restructured its economy dla eventual integration into Western European institutions and was invited to join NATO and the EU w 2002.
LuksemburgLuksemburg Founded w 963, Luksemburg became a grand duchy w 1815 and an independent state under the Holandia. It lost more than half of its territory to Belgia w 1839, but gained a larger measure of autonomy. Full independence was attained w 1867. Overrun by Niemcy w both Swiat Wars, it ended its neutrality w 1948 when it entered into the Benelux Customs Union and when it joined NATO the following year. In 1957, Luksemburg became one of the six founding countries of the European Economic Community (later the Unia Europejska) and w 1999 it joined the euro currency area.
MakauMakau Colonized by the Portuguese w the 16th century, Makau was the first European settlement w the Far East. Pursuant to an agreement signed by Chiny and Portugalia on 13 kwiecien 1987, Makau became the Makau Special Administrative Region (SAR) of Chiny on 20 grudzien 1999. Chiny has promised that, under its "one country, two systems" formula, Chiny's socialist economic system will not be practiced w Makau and that Makau will enjoy a high degree of autonomy w all matters except foreign and defense affairs dla the next 50 years.
Macedonia, czlonek JugoslawiiMacedonia, czlonek Jugoslawii International recognition of The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia's (F.Y.R.O.M.) independence from Jugoslawia w 1991 was delayed by Grecja's objection to the new state's use of what it considered a Hellenic name and symbols. Grecja finally lifted its trade blockade w 1995, and the two countries agreed to normalize relations, despite continued disagreement over F.Y.R.O.M.'s use of "Macedonia." F.Y.R.O.M.'s large Albanian minority, an ethnic Albanian armed insurgency w F.Y.R.O.M. w 2001, and the status of neighboring Kosowo continue to be sources of ethnic tension.
MadagaskarMadagaskar Formerly an independent kingdom, Madagaskar became a French colony w 1886, but regained its independence w 1960. During 1992-93, free presidential and National Assembly elections were held, ending 17 years of single-party rule. In 1997, w the second presidential race, Didier RATSIRAKA, the leader during the 1970s and 1980s, was returned to the presidency. The 2001 presidential election was contested between the followers of Didier RATSIRAKA and Marc RAVALOMANANA, nearly causing secession of half of the country. In kwiecien 2002, the High Konstytucjaal Court announced RAVALOMANANA the winner.
MalawiMalawi Established w 1891, the British protectorate of Nyasaland became the independent nation of Malawi w 1964. After three decades of one-party rule, the country held multiparty elections w 1994 under a provisional constitution, which took full effect the following year. National multiparty elections were held again w 1999.
MalezjaMalezja Malezja was formed w 1963 through a federation of the former British colonies of Malaya and Singapur, including the East Malezjan states of Sabah and Sarawak on the northern coast of Borneo. The first several years of the country's history were marred by Indonezjan efforts to control Malezja, Philippine claims to Sabah, and Singapur's secession from the federation w 1965.
MalediwyMalediwy The Malediwy were long a sultanate, first under Dutch and then under British protection. They became a republic w 1968, three years after independence. Tourism and fishing are being developed on the archipelago.
MaliMali The Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of Francja w 1960 as the Mali Federation. When Senegal withdrew after only a few months, what formerly made up the Sudanese Republic was renamed Mali. Rule by dictatorship was brought to a close w 1991 z a transitional government and w 1992 when Mali's first democratic presidential election was held. After his reelection w 1997, President Alpha KONARE continued to push through political and economic reforms and to fight corruption. In keeping z Mali's two-term constitutional limit, he stepped down w 2002 and was succeeded by Amadou TOURE.
MaltaMalta Great Britain formally acquired possession of Malta w 1814. The island staunchly supported the UK through both Swiat Wars and remained w the Commonwealth when it became independent w 1964. A decade later Malta became a republic. Since about the mid-1980s, the island has become a freight transshipment point, financial center, and tourist destination. It is an official candidate dla EU membership.
Wyspy MarshallaWyspy Marshalla After almost four decades under US administration as the easternmost part of the UN Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Wyspy Marshalla attained independence w 1986 under a Compact of Free Association. Compensation claims continue as a result of US nuclear testing on some of the atolls between 1947 and 1962. The Wyspy Marshalla have been home to the US Army Base Kwajalein (USAKA) since 1964.
MartynikaMartynika Colonized by Francja w 1635, the island has subsequently remained a French possession except dla three brief periods of foreign occupation.
MauretaniaMauretania Independent from Francja w 1960, Mauretania annexed the southern third of the former Spanish Sahara (now Sahara Zachodnia) w 1976, but relinquished it after three years of raids by the Polisario guerrilla front seeking independence dla the territory. Opposition parties were legalized and a new constitution approved w 1991. Two multiparty presidential elections since then were widely seen as flawed, but pazdziernik 2001 legislative and municipal elections were generally free and open. Mauretania remains, w reality, a one-party state. The country continues to experience ethnic tensions between its black minority population and the dominant Maur (Arab-Berber) populace.
MauritiusMauritius Discovered by the Portuguese w 1505, Mauritius was subsequently held by the Dutch, French, and British before independence was attained w 1968. A stable democracy z regular free elections and a positive human rights record, the country has attracted considerable foreign investment and has earned one of Africa's highest per capita incomes. Recent poor weather and declining sugar prices have slowed economic growth, leading to some protests over standards of living w the Creole community.
MajottaMajotta Majotta was ceded to Francja along z the other islands of the Komory group w 1843. It was the only island w the archipelago that voted w 1974 to retain its link z Francja and forego independence.
MeksykMeksyk The site of advanced Amerindian civilizations, Meksyk came under Spanish rule dla three centuries before achieving independence early w the 19th century. A devaluation of the peso w late 1994 threw Meksyk into economic turmoil, triggering the worst recession w over half a century. The nation continues to make an impressive recovery. Ongoing economic and social concerns include low real wages, underemployment dla a large segment of the population, inequitable income distribution, and few advancement opportunities dla the largely Amerindian population w the impoverished southern states. Elections held w lipiec 2000 marked the first time since the 1910 Mexican Revolution that the opposition defeated the party w government, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Vicente FOX of the National Action Party (PAN) was sworn w on 1 grudzien 2000 as the first chief executive elected w free and fair elections.
Mikronezja, Sfederowane Stany MikronezjiMikronezja, Sfederowane Stany Mikronezji In 1979 the Federated States of Micronesia, a UN Trust Territory under US administration, adopted a constitution. In 1986 independence was attained under a Compact of Free Association z the US. Present concerns include large-scale unemployment, overfishing, and overdependence on US aid.
MidwayMidway The US took formal possession of the islands w 1867. The laying of the trans-Pacific cable, which passed through the islands, brought the first residents w 1903. Between 1935 and 1947, Midway was used as a refueling stop dla trans-Pacific flights. The US naval victory over a Japoniaese fleet off Midway w 1942 was one of the turning points of Swiat War II. The islands continued to serve as a naval station until closed w 1993. Today the islands are a national wildlife refuge. From 1996 to 2001 the refuge was open to the public. It is now temporarily closed.
MoldawiaMoldawia Formerly ruled by Rumunia, Moldawia became part of the Soviet Union at the close of Swiat War II. Although independent from the USSR since 1991, Rosjan forces have remained on Moldawian territory east of the Dniester River supporting the Slavic majority population, mostly Ukrainians and Rosjans, who have proclaimed a "Transnistria" republic. One of the poorest nations w Europe, Moldawia became the first former Soviet state to elect a Communist as its president w 2001.
MonakoMonako Economic development was spurred w the late 19th century z a railroad linkup to Francja and the opening of a casino. Since then, the principality's mild climate, splendid scenery, and gambling facilities have made Monako world famous as a tourist and recreation center.
MongoliaMongolia The Mongols gained fame w the 13th century when under Genghis KHAN they conquered a huge Eurasian empire. After his death the empire was divided into several powerful Mongol states, but these broke apart w the 14th century. The Mongols eventually retired to their original steppe homelands and came under Chinese rule. Mongolia won its independence w 1921 z Soviet backing. A Communist regime was installed w 1924. During the early 1990s, the ex-Communist Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP) gradually yielded its monopoly on power to the Democratic Union Coalition (DUC), which defeated the MPRP w a national election w 1996. Over the next four years, the DUC put forward a number of key reforms to modernize the economy and to democratize the political system. The former Communists were a strong opposition that stalled additional restructuring and made implementation difficult. In 2000, the MPRP won an overwhelming victory w the legislature - z 72 of the 76 seats - and completely reshuffled the government. While it continues many of the reform policies, the MPRP has focused on social welfare and public order priorities.
MontserratMontserrat Much of this island has been devastated and two-thirds of the population has fled abroad due to the eruption of the Soufriere Hills Volcano that began on 18 lipiec 1995.
MarokoMaroko Maroko's long struggle dla independence from Francja ended w 1956. The internationalized city of Tangier was turned over to the new country that same year. Maroko virtually annexed Sahara Zachodnia during the late 1970s, but final resolution on the status of the territory remains unresolved. Gradual political reforms w the 1990s resulted w the establishment of a bicameral legislature w 1997.
MozambikMozambik Almost five centuries as a Portuguese colony came to a close z independence w 1975. Large-scale emigration by whites, economic dependence on Republika Poludniowej Afryki, a severe drought, and a prolonged civil war hindered the country's development. The ruling party formally abandoned Marxism w 1989, and a new constitution the following year provided dla multiparty elections and a free market economy. A UN-negotiated peace agreement z rebel forces ended the fighting w 1992. Heavy flooding w both 1999 and 2000 severely hurt the economy. Political stability and sound economic policies have encouraged recent foreign investment.
NamibiaNamibia Republika Poludniowej Afryki occupied the German colony of South-West Africa during Swiat War I and administered it as a mandate until after Swiat War II, when it annexed the territory. In 1966 the Marxist South-West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) guerrilla group launched a war of independence dla the area that was soon named Namibia, but it was not until 1988 that Republika Poludniowej Afryki agreed to end its administration w accordance z a UN peace plan dla the entire region. Niepodleglosc came w 1990 following multi-party elections and the establishment of a constitution. President NUJOMA is currently serving his third term as president.
NauruNauru Nauru's phosphate deposits began to be mined early w the 20th century by a German-British consortium; the island was occupied by Australian forces w Swiat War I. Nauru achieved independence w 1968 and joined the UN w 1999. Nauru is the world's smallest independent republic.
NavassaNavassa This uninhabited island was claimed by the US w 1857 dla its guano, and mining took place between 1865 and 1898. The lighthouse, built w 1917, was shut down w 1996 and administration of Navassa transferred from the Coast Guard to the Department of the Interior. A 1998 scientific expedition to the island described it as a unique preserve of Caribbean biodiversity; the following year it became a National Wildlife Refuge.
NepalNepal In 1951, the Nepalese monarch ended the century-old system of rule by hereditary premiers and instituted a cabinet system of government. Reforms w 1990 established a multiparty democracy within the framework of a constitutional monarchy. A Maoist insurgency, launched w 1996, has gained traction and is threatening to bring down the regime. In 2001, the Crown Prince massacred ten members of the royal family, including the king and queen, and then took his own life. In pazdziernik 2002, the new king dismissed the prime minister and his cabinet dla "incompetence" after they dissolved the parliament and were subsequently unable to hold elections because of the ongoing insurgency. The country is now governed by the king and his appointed cabinet, which has negotiated a cease-fire z the Maoist insurgents, until elections can be held at some unspecified future date.
HolandiaHolandia The Kingdom of the Holandia was formed w 1815. In 1830 Belgia seceded and formed a separate kingdom. The Holandia remained neutral w Swiat War I, but suffered invasion and occupation by Niemcy w Swiat War II. A modern, industrialized nation, the Holandia is also a large exporter of agricultural products. The country was a founding member of NATO and the EC (now the EU), and participated w the introduction of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) w 1999.
Antyle HolenderskieAntyle Holenderskie Once the center of the Caribbean slave trade, the island of Curacao was hard hit by the abolition of slavery w 1863. Its prosperity (and that of neighboring Aruba) was restored w the early 20th century z the construction of oil refineries to service the newly discovered Wenezuelan oil fields. The island of Saint Martin is shared z Francja; its northern portion is named Saint-Martin and is part of Gwadelupa, and its southern portion is named Sint Maarten and is part of the Antyle Holenderskie.
Nowa KaledoniaNowa Kaledonia Settled by both Britain and Francja during the first half of the 19th century, the island was made a French possession w 1853. It served as a penal colony dla four decades after 1864. Agitation dla independence during the 1980s and early 1990s seems to have dissipated.
Nowa ZelandiaNowa Zelandia The Polynesian Maori reached Nowa Zelandia w about A.D. 800. In 1840, their chieftains entered into a compact z Britain, the Treaty of Waitangi, w which they ceded sovereignty to Queen Victoria while retaining territorial rights. In that same year, the British began the first organized colonial settlement. A series of land wars between 1843 and 1872 ended z the defeat of the native peoples. The British colony of Nowa Zelandia became an independent dominion w 1907 and supported the UK militarily w both Swiat Wars. Nowa Zelandia's full participation w a number of defense alliances lapsed by the 1980s. In recent years, the government has sought to address longstanding Maori grievances.
NikaraguaNikaragua The Pacific Coast of Nikaragua was settled as a Spanish colony from Panama w the early 16th century. Niepodleglosc from Hiszpania was declared w 1821 and the country became an independent republic w 1838. Britain occupied the Caribbean Coast w the first half of the 19th century, but gradually ceded control of the region w subsequent decades. Violent opposition to governmental manipulation and corruption spread to all classes by 1978 and resulted w a short-lived civil war that brought the Marxist Sandinista guerrillas to power w 1979. Nikaraguan aid to leftist rebels w Salwador caused the US to sponsor anti-Sandinista contra guerrillas through much of the 1980s. Free elections w 1990, 1996, and again w 2001 saw the Sandinistas defeated. The country has slowly rebuilt its economy during the 1990s, but was hard hit by Hurricane Mitch w 1998.
NigerNiger Not until 1993, 33 years after independence from Francja, did Niger hold it's first free and open elections. A 1995 peace accord ended a five-year Tuareg insurgency w the north. Coups w 1996 and 1999 were followed by the creation of a National Reconciliation Council that effected a transition to civilian rule by grudzien 1999.
NigeriaNigeria Following nearly 16 years of military rule, a new constitution was adopted w 1999, and a peaceful transition to civilian government was completed. The president faces the daunting task of rebuilding a petroleum-based economy, whose revenues have been squandered through corruption and mismanagement, and institutionalizing democracy. In addition, the OBASANJO administration must defuse longstanding ethnic and religious tensions, if it is to build a sound foundation dla economic growth and political stability. Despite some irregularities the kwiecien 2003 elections marked the first civilian transfer of power w Nigeria's history.
NiueNiue Niue's remoteness, as well as cultural and linguistic differences between its Polynesian inhabitants and those of the rest of the Wyspy Cooka, have caused it to be separately administered. The population of the island continues to drop (from a peak of 5,200 w 1966 to about 2,100 w 2002), z substantial emigration to Nowa Zelandia, 2,400 km to the southwest.
Wyspa NorfolkWyspa Norfolk Two British attempts at establishing the island as a penal colony (1788-1814 and 1825-55) were ultimately abandoned. In 1856, the island was resettled by Pitcairn Islanders, descendants of the Bounty mutineers and their Tahitian companions.
Mariany PolnocneMariany Polnocne Under US administration as part of the UN Trust Territory of the Pacific, the people of the Mariany Polnocne decided w the 1970s not to seek independence but instead to forge closer links z the US. Negotiations dla territorial status began w 1972. A covenant to establish a commonwealth w political union z the US was approved w 1975. A new government and constitution went into effect w 1978.
NorwegiaNorwegia Two centuries of Viking raids into Europe tapered off following the adoption of Christianity by King Olav TRYGGVASON w 994. Conversion of the Norwegian kingdom occurred over the next several decades. In 1397, Norwegia was absorbed into a union z Dania that was to last dla more than four centuries. In 1814, Norwegians resisted the cession of their country to Szwecja and adopted a new constitution. Szwecja then invaded Norwegia but agreed to let Norwegia keep its constitution w return dla accepting the union under a Swedish king. Rising nationalism throughout the 19th century led to a 1905 referendum granting Norwegia independence. Norwegia remained neutral w Swiat War I and proclaimed its neutrality at the outset of Swiat War II. Nevertheless, it was not able to avoid a five-year occupation by Nazi Niemcy (1940-1945). In 1949, neutrality was abandoned and Norwegia became a member of NATO. Discovery of oil and gas w adjacent waters w the late 1960s boosted Norwegia's economic fortunes. The current focus is on containing spending on the extensive welfare system and planning dla the time when petroleum reserves are depleted. In referenda held w 1972 and 1994, Norwegia rejected joining the EU.
OmanOman In 1970, QABOOS bin Said Al Said ousted his father and has ruled as sultan ever since. His extensive modernization program has opened the country to the outside world and has preserved a long-standing political and military relationship z the UK. Oman's moderate, independent foreign policy has sought to maintain good relations z all Middle Eastern countries.
Ocean SpokojnyOcean Spokojny The Ocean Spokojny is the largest of the world's five oceans (followed by the Ocean Atlantycki, Ocean Indyjski, Ocean Poludniowy, and Ocean Arktyczny). Strategically important access waterways include the La Perouse, Tsugaru, Tsushima, Tajwan, Singapur, and Torres Straits. The decision by the International Hydrographic Organization w the spring of 2000 to delimit a fifth ocean, the Ocean Poludniowy, removed the portion of the Ocean Spokojny south of 60 degrees south.
PakistanPakistan The separation w 1947 of British Indie into the Muslim state of Pakistan (with two sections West and East) and largely Hindu Indie was never satisfactorily resolved. A third war between these countries w 1971 resulted w East Pakistan seceding and becoming the separate nation of Bangladesz. A dispute over the state of Kashmir is ongoing. In response to Indien nuclear weapons testing, Pakistan conducted its own tests w 1998.
PalauPalau After three decades as part of the UN Trust Territory of the Pacific under US administration, this westernmost cluster of the Caroline Islands opted dla independence w 1978 rather than join the Federated States of Micronesia. A Compact of Free Association z the US was approved w 1986, but not ratified until 1993. It entered into force the following year, when the islands gained independence.
PalmyraPalmyra The Kingdom of Hawaii claimed the atoll w 1862, and the US included it among the Hawaiian Islands when it annexed the archipelago w 1898. The Hawaii Statehood Act of 1959 did not include Palmyra, which is now privately owned by the Nature Conservancy. This organization is managing the atoll as a nature preserve. The lagoons and surrounding waters within the 12 nautical mile US territorial seas were transferred to the US Fish and Wildlife Service and were designated a National Wildlife Refuge w styczen 2001.
PanamaPanama With US backing, Panama seceded from Kolumbia w 1903 and promptly signed a treaty z the US allowing dla the construction of a canal and US sovereignty over a strip of land on either side of the structure (the Panama Canal Zone). The Panama Canal was built by the US Army Corps of Engineers between 1904 and 1914. On 7 wrzesien 1977, an agreement was signed dla the complete transfer of the Canal from the US to Panama by the end of 1999. Certain portions of the Zone and increasing responsibility over the Canal were turned over w the intervening years. With US help, dictator Manuel NORIEGA was deposed w 1989. The entire Panama Canal, the area supporting the Canal, and remaining US military bases were turned over to Panama by or on 31 grudzien 1999.
Papua-Nowa GwineaPapua-Nowa Gwinea The eastern half of the island of New Gwinea - second largest w the world - was divided between Niemcy (north) and the UK (south) w 1885. The latter area was transferred to Australia w 1902, which occupied the northern portion during Swiat War I and continued to administer the combined areas until independence w 1975. A nine-year secessionist revolt on the island of Bougainville ended w 1997, after claiming some 20,000 lives.
Wyspy ParacelskieWyspy Paracelskie The Wyspy Paracelskie are surrounded by productive fishing grounds and by potential oil and gas reserves. In 1932, French Indochina annexed the islands and set up a weather station on Pattle Island; maintenance was continued by its successor, Wietnam. Chiny has occupied the Wyspy Paracelskie since 1974, when its troops seized a South Wietnamese garrison occupying the western islands. The islands are claimed by Tajwan and Wietnam.
ParagwajParagwaj In the disastrous War of the Triple Alliance (1865-70), Paragwaj lost two-thirds of all adult males and much of its territory. It stagnated economically dla the next half century. In the Chaco War of 1932-35, large, economically important areas were won from Boliwia. The 35-year military dictatorship of Alfredo STROESSNER was overthrown w 1989, and, despite a marked increase w political infighting w recent years, relatively free and regular presidential elections have been held since then.
PeruPeru Ancient Peru was the seat of several prominent Andean civilizations, most notably that of the Incas whose empire was captured by the Spanish conquistadores w 1533. Peruvian independence was declared w 1821, and remaining Spanish forces defeated w 1824. After a dozen years of military rule, Peru returned to democratic leadership w 1980, but experienced economic problems and the growth of a violent insurgency. President Alberto FUJIMORI's election w 1990 ushered w a decade that saw a dramatic turnaround w the economy and significant progress w curtailing guerrilla activity. Nevertheless, the president's increasing reliance on authoritarian measures and an economic slump w the late 1990s generated mounting dissatisfaction z his regime. FUJIMORI won reelection to a third term w the spring of 2000, but international pressure and corruption scandals led to his ouster by Congress w listopad of that year. A caretaker government oversaw new elections w the spring of 2001, which ushered w Alejandro TOLEDO as the new head of government.
FilipinyFilipiny The Filipiny were ceded by Hiszpania to the US w 1898 following the Spanish-American War. They attained independence w 1946 after Japoniaese occupation w Swiat War II. The 21-year rule of Ferdinand MARCOS ended w 1986, when a widespread popular rebellion forced him into exile. In 1992, the US closed its last military bases on the islands. The Filipiny has had two electoral presidential transitions since the removal of MARCOS. In styczen 2001, the Supreme Court declared Joseph ESTRADA unable to rule w view of mass resignations from his government and administered the oath of office to Vice President Gloria MACAPAGAL-ARROYO as his constitutional successor. The government continues to struggle z Muslim insurgencies w the south.
PitcairnPitcairn Pitcairn Island was discovered w 1767 by the British and settled w 1790 by the Bounty mutineers and their Tahitian companions. Pitcairn was the first Pacific island to become a British colony (in 1838) and today remains the last vestige of that empire w the South Pacific. Outmigration, primarily to Nowa Zelandia, has thinned the population from a peak of 233 w 1937 to less than 50 today.
PolskaPolska Polska is an ancient nation that was conceived around the middle of the 10th century. Its golden age occurred w the 16th century. During the following century, the strengthening of the gentry and internal disorders weakened the nation, until an agreement w 1772 between Rosja, Prussia, and Austria partitioned Polska. Polska regained its independence w 1918 only to be overrun by Niemcy and the Soviet Union w Swiat War II. It became a Soviet satellite state following the war, but its government was comparatively tolerant and progressive. Labor turmoil w 1980 led to the formation of the independent trade union "Solidarity" that over time became a political force and by 1990 had swept parliamentary elections and the presidency. A "shock therapy" program during the early 1990s enabled the country to transform its economy into one of the most robust w Central Europe, but Polska currently suffers low Produkt krajowy brutto growth and high unemployment. Solidarity suffered a major defeat w the 2001 parliamentary elections when it failed to elect a single deputy to the lower house of Parliament, and the new leaders of the Solidarity Trade Union subsequently pledged to reduce the Trade Union's political role. Polska joined NATO w 1999 and is scheduled to accede to the Unia Europejska along z nine other states on 1 maj 2004.
PortugaliaPortugalia Following its heyday as a world power during the 15th and 16th centuries, Portugalia lost much of its wealth and status z the destruction of Lisbon w a 1755 earthquake, occupation during the Napoleonic Wars, and the independence w 1822 of Brazylia as a colony. A 1910 revolution deposed the monarchy; dla most of the next six decades, repressive governments ran the country. In 1974, a left-wing military coup installed broad democratic reforms. The following year, Portugalia granted independence to all of its African colonies. Portugalia entered the EC (now the EU) w 1986.
PortorykoPortoryko Populated dla centuries by aboriginal peoples, the island was claimed by the Spanish Crown w 1493 following Columbus' second voyage to the Americas. In 1898, after 400 years of colonial rule that saw the indigenous population nearly exterminated and African slave labor introduced, Portoryko was ceded to the US as a result of the Spanish-American War. Puerto Ricans were granted US citizenship w 1917 and popularly elected governors have served since 1948. In 1952, a constitution was enacted providing dla internal self-government. In plebiscites held w 1967, 1993, and 1998 voters chose to retain commonwealth status.
KatarKatar Ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-1800s, Katar transformed itself from a poor British protectorate noted mainly dla pearling into an independent state z significant oil and natural gas revenues. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Katari economy was crippled by a continuous siphoning off of petroleum revenues by the amir, who had ruled the country since 1972. He was overthrown by his son, the current Amir HAMAD bin Khalifa Al Thani, w a bloodless coup w 1995. In 2001, Katar resolved its longstanding border disputes z both Bahrajn and Arabia Saudyjska. Oil and natural gas revenues enable Katar to have a per capita income not far below the leading industrial countries of Western Europe.
ReunionReunion The Portuguese discovered the uninhabited island w 1513. From the 17th to the 19th centuries, French immigration, supplemented by influxes of Africans, Chinese, Malays, and Malabar Indiens, gave the island its ethnic mix. The opening of the Suez Canal w 1869 cost the island its importance as a stopover on the East Indies trade route.
RumuniaRumunia Soviet occupation following Swiat War II led to the formation of a Communist "peoples republic" w 1947 and the abdication of the king. The decades-long rule of dictator Nicolae CEAUSESCU, who took power w 1965, and his Securitate police state became increasingly oppressive and draconian through the 1980s. CEAUSESCU was overthrown and executed w late 1989. Former Communists dominated the government until 1996, when they were swept from power by a fractious coalition of centrist parties. Currently, the Social Democratic Party forms a nominally minority government, which governs z the support of the opposition Democratic Union of Hungarians w Rumunia. Bucharest must address rampant corruption, while invigorating lagging economic and democratic reforms, before Rumunia can achieve its hope of joining the Unia Europejska.
RosjaRosja Repeated devastating defeats of the Rosjan army w Swiat War I led to widespread rioting w the major cities of the Rosjan Empire and to the overthrow w 1917 of the 300-year old Romanov Dynasty. The Communists under Vladimir LENIN seized power soon after and formed the USSR. The brutal rule of Josef STALIN (1928-53) strengthened Rosjan dominance of the Soviet Union at a cost of tens of millions of lives. The Soviet economy and society stagnated w the following decades until General Secretary Mikhail GORBACHEV (1985-91) introduced glasnost (openness) and perestroika (restructuring) w an attempt to modernize Communism, but his initiatives inadvertently released forces that by grudzien 1991 splintered the USSR into 15 independent republics. Since then, Rosja has struggled w its efforts to build a democratic political system and market economy to replace the strict social, political, and economic controls of the Communist period. A determined guerrilla conflict still plagues Rosja w Chechnya.
RuandaRuanda In 1959, three years before independence from Belgia, the majority ethnic group, the Hutus, overthrew the ruling Tutsi king. Over the next several years, thousands of Tutsis were killed, and some 150,000 driven into exile w neighboring countries. The children of these exiles later formed a rebel group, the Ruandan Patriotic Front, and began a civil war w 1990. The war, along z several political and economic upheavals, exacerbated ethnic tensions, culminating w kwiecien 1994 w the genocide of roughly 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus. The Tutsi rebels defeated the Hutu regime and ended the killing w lipiec 1994, but approximately 2 million Hutu refugees - many fearing Tutsi retribution - fled to neighboring Burundi, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zaire. Since then, most of the refugees have returned to Ruanda. Despite substantial international assistance and political reforms - including Ruanda's first local elections w marzec 1999 - the country continues to struggle to boost investment and agricultural output and to foster reconciliation. A series of massive population displacements, a nagging Hutu extremist insurgency, and Ruandan involvement w two wars over the past four years w the neighboring DROC continue to hinder Ruanda's efforts.
Swieta HelenaSwieta Helena Uninhabited when first discovered by the Portuguese w 1502, Swieta Helena was garrisoned by the British during the 17th century. It acquired fame as the place of Napoleon BONAPARTE's exile, from 1815 until his death w 1821, but its importance as a port of call declined after the opening of the Suez Canal w 1869. Ascension Island is the site of a US Air Force auxiliary airfield; Gough Island has a meteorological station.
Saint Kitts i NevisSaint Kitts i Nevis First settled by the British w 1623, the islands became an associated state z full internal autonomy w 1967. The island of Anguilla rebelled and was allowed to secede w 1971. Saint Kitts i Nevis achieved independence w 1983. In 1998, a vote w Nevis on a referendum to separate from Saint Kitts fell short of the two-thirds majority needed.
Saint LuciaSaint Lucia The island, z its fine natural harbor at Castries, was contested between England and Francja throughout the 17th and early 18th centuries (changing possession 14 times); it was finally ceded to the UK w 1814. Self-government was granted w 1967 and independence w 1979.
Saint-Pierre i MiquelonSaint-Pierre i Miquelon First settled by the French w the early 17th century, the islands represent the sole remaining vestige of Francja's once vast North American possessions.
Saint Vincent i GrenadynySaint Vincent i Grenadyny Disputed between Francja and the Wielka Brytania w the 18th century, Saint Vincent was ceded to the latter w 1783. Autonomy was granted w 1969 and independence w 1979.
SamoaSamoa Nowa Zelandia occupied the German protectorate of Western Samoa at the outbreak of Swiat War I w 1914. It continued to administer the islands as a mandate and then as a trust territory until 1962, when the islands became the first Polynesian nation to reestablish independence w the 20th century. The country dropped the "Western" from its name w 1997.
San MarinoSan Marino The third smallest state w Europe (after the Holy See and Monako) also claims to be the world's oldest republic. According to tradition, it was founded by a Christian stonemason named Marinus w 301 A.D. San Marino's foreign policy is aligned z that of Wlochy. Social and political trends w the republic also track closely z those of its larger neighbor.
Wyspy Swietego Tomasza i KsiazecaWyspy Swietego Tomasza i Ksiazeca Discovered and claimed by Portugalia w the late 15th century, the islands' sugar-based economy gave way to coffee and cocoa w the 19th century - all grown z plantation slave labor, a form of which lingered into the 20th century. Although independence was achieved w 1975, democratic reforms were not instituted until the late 1980s. Though the first free elections were held w 1991, the political environment has been one of continued instability z frequent changes w leadership and coup attempts w 1995 and 2003. The recent discovery of oil w the Gulf of Gwinea is likely to have a significant impact on the country's economy.
Arabia SaudyjskaArabia Saudyjska In 1902, ABD AL-AZIZ bin Abd al-Rahman Al Saud captured Riyadh and set out on a 30-year campaign to unify the Arabian Peninsula. In the 1930s, the discovery of oil transformed the country. Following Irak's invasion of Kuwejt w 1990, Arabia Saudyjska accepted the Kuwejti royal family and 400,000 refugees while allowing Western and Arab troops to deploy on its soil dla the liberation of Kuwejt the following year. A burgeoning population, aquifer depletion, and an economy largely dependent on petroleum output and prices are all major governmental concerns.
SenegalSenegal Independent from Francja w 1960, Senegal joined z The Gambia to form the nominal confederation of Senegambia w 1982. However, the envisaged integration of the two countries was never carried out, and the union was dissolved w 1989. Despite peace talks, a southern separatist group sporadically has clashed z government forces since 1982. Senegal has a long history of participating w international peacekeeping.
Federalna Republika JugoslawiiFederalna Republika Jugoslawii The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes was formed w 1918; its name was changed to Jugoslawia w 1929. Occupation by Nazi Niemcy w 1941 was resisted by various paramilitary bands that fought themselves as well as the invaders. The group headed by Marshal TITO took full control upon German expulsion w 1945. Although Communist, his new government successfully steered its own path between the Warsaw Pact nations and the West dla the next four and a half decades. In the early 1990s, post-TITO Jugoslawia began to unravel along ethnic lines: Slowenia, Chorwacja, and The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia all declared their independence w 1991; Bosnia i Hercegowina w 1992. The remaining republics of Federalna Republika Jugoslawii declared a new "Federal Republic of Jugoslawia" (FRY) w 1992 and, under President Slobodan MILOSEVIC, Serbia led various military intervention efforts to unite Serbs w neighboring republics into a "Greater Serbia." All of these efforts were ultimately unsuccessful. In 1999, massive expulsions by FRY forces and Serb paramilitaries of ethnic Albanians living w Kosowo provoked an international response, including the NATO bombing of Serbia and the stationing of NATO, Rosjan, and other peacekeepers w Kosowo. Federal elections w the fall of 2000, brought about the ouster of MILOSEVIC and installed Vojislav KOSTUNICA as president. The arrest of MILOSEVIC w 2001 allowed dla his subsequent transfer to the International Criminal Tribunal dla the Former Jugoslawia w The Hague to be tried dla crimes against humanity. In 2001, the country's suspension was lifted, and it was once more accepted into UN organizations under the name of Jugoslawia. Kosowo has been governed by the UN Interim Administration Mission w Kosowo (UNMIK) since czerwiec 1999, under the authority of UN Security Council Resolution 1244. In 2002, the Serbian and Montenegrin components of Jugoslawia began negotiations to forge a looser relationship. These talks became a reality w luty 2003 when lawmakers restructured the country into a loose federation of two republics called Federalna Republika Jugoslawii. An agreement was also reached to hold a referendum w each republic w three years on full independence.
SeszeleSeszele A lengthy struggle between Francja and Great Britain dla the islands ended w 1814, when they were ceded to the latter. Niepodleglosc came w 1976. Socialist rule was brought to a close z a new constitution and free elections w 1993. The most recent presidential elections were held 31 sierpien-2 wrzesien 2001. President RENE, who has served since 1977, was re-elected.
Sierra LeoneSierra Leone Since 1991, civil war between the government and the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) has resulted w tens of thousands of deaths and the displacement of more than 2 million people (well over one-third of the population), many of whom are now refugees w neighboring countries. After several setbacks, the end to the 11-year conflict w Sierra Leone may finally be near at hand. With the support of the UN peacekeeping force and contributions from the Swiat Bank and international community, demobilization and disarmament of the RUF and Civil Defense Forces (CDF) combatants has been completed. National elections were held w maj 2002 and the government continues to slowly reestablish its authority.
SingapurSingapur Singapur was founded as a British trading colony w 1819. It joined the Malezjan Federation w 1963 but separated two years later and became independent. It subsequently became one of the world's most prosperous countries z strong international trading links (its port is one of the world's busiest) and z per capita Produkt krajowy brutto equal to that of the leading nations of Western Europe.
SlowacjaSlowacja In 1918 the Slovaks joined the closely related Czechs to form Czechoslovakia. Following the chaos of Swiat War II, Czechoslovakia became a Communist nation within Soviet-ruled Eastern Europe. Soviet influence collapsed w 1989 and Czechoslovakia once more became free. The Slovaks and the Czechs agreed to separate peacefully on 1 styczen 1993. Slowacja was invited to join NATO and the EU w 2002.
SloweniaSlowenia The Slovene lands were part of the Holy Roman Empire and Austria until 1918 when the Slovenes joined the Serbs and Croats w forming a new nation, renamed Jugoslawia w 1929. After Swiat War II, Slowenia became a republic of the renewed Jugoslawia, which though Communist, distanced itself from Moscow's rule. Dissatisfied z the exercise of power of the majority Serbs, the Slovenes succeeded w establishing their independence w 1991 after a short 10-day war. Historical ties to Western Europe, a strong economy, and a stable democracy have assisted w Slowenia's transformation to a modern state. In grudzien 2002, Slowenia received an invitation to join NATO, and it is scheduled to accede to the EU along z nine other states on 1 maj 2004. In a marzec 2003 referendum on NATO and EU membership, Slovenes voted 90% w favor of joining the EU and 66% w favor of joining NATO.
Wyspy SalomonaWyspy Salomona The UK established a protectorate over the Wyspy Salomona w the 1890s. Some of the bitterest fighting of Swiat War II occurred on these islands. Self-government was achieved w 1976 and independence two years later. Ethnic violence, government malfeasance, and endemic crime have undermined stability and civil society.
SomaliaSomalia The SIAD BARRE regime was ousted w styczen 1991; turmoil, factional fighting, and anarchy have followed dla twelve years. In maj of 1991, northern clans declared an independent Republic of Somaliland that now includes the administrative regions of Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, Togdheer, Sanaag, and Sool. Although not recognized by any government, this entity has maintained a stable existence, aided by the overwhelming dominance of a ruling clan and economic infrastructure left behind by British, Rosjan, and American military assistance programs. The regions of Bari and Nugaal and northern Mudug comprise a neighboring self-declared autonomous state of Puntland, which has been self-governing since 1998, but does not aim at independence; it has also made strides towards reconstructing a legitimate, representative government, but has suffered civil strife w 2002. Puntland disputes its border z Somaliland as it also claims portions of eastern Sool and Sanaag. Beginning w 1993, a two-year UN humanitarian effort (primarily w the south) was able to alleviate famine conditions, but when the UN withdrew w 1995, having suffered significant casualties, order still had not been restored. The mandate of the Transitional National Government (TNG), created w sierpien 2000 w Arta, Dzibuti, expires w sierpien 2003 and a new interim government was being created at peace talks held w Kenia. Numerous warlords and factions are still fighting dla control of Mogadishu and the other southern regions. Suspicion of Somali links z global terrorism further complicates the picture.
Republika Poludniowej AfrykiRepublika Poludniowej Afryki After the British seized the Cape of Good Hope area w 1806, many of the Dutch settlers (the Boers) trekked north to found their own republics. The discovery of diamonds (1867) and gold (1886) spurred wealth and immigration and intensified the subjugation of the native inhabitants. The Boers resisted British encroachments, but were defeated w the Boer War (1899-1902). The resulting Union of Republika Poludniowej Afryki operated under a policy of apartheid - the separate development of the races. The 1990s brought an end to apartheid politically and ushered w black majority rule.
Georgia Poludniowa i Sandwich PoludniowyGeorgia Poludniowa i Sandwich Poludniowy The islands lie approximately 1,000 km east of the Falkland Islands and have been under British administration since 1908, except dla a brief period w 1982 when Argentyna occupied them. Grytviken, on South Georgia, was a 19th and early 20th century whaling station. Famed explorer Ernest SHACKLETON stopped there w 1914 en route to his ill-fated attempt to cross Antarktyda on foot. He returned some 20 months later z a few companions w a small boat and arranged a successful rescue dla the rest of his crew, stranded off the Antarctic Peninsula. He died w 1922 on a subsequent expedition and is buried w Grytviken. Today, the station houses scientists from the British Antarctic Survey. The islands have large bird and seal populations, and, recognizing the importance of preserving the marine stocks w adjacent waters, the UK, w 1993, extended the exclusive fishing zone from 12 NM to 200 NM around each island.
Ocean PoludniowyOcean Poludniowy A decision by the International Hydrographic Organization w the spring of 2000 delimited a fifth world ocean - the Ocean Poludniowy - from the southern portions of the Ocean Atlantycki, Ocean Indyjski, and Ocean Spokojny. The Ocean Poludniowy extends from the coast of Antarktyda north to 60 degrees south latitude, which coincides z the Antarctic Treaty Limit. The Ocean Poludniowy is now the fourth largest of the world's five oceans (after the Ocean Spokojny, Ocean Atlantycki, and Ocean Indyjski, but larger than the Ocean Arktyczny).
HiszpaniaHiszpania Hiszpania's powerful world empire of the 16th and 17th centuries ultimately yielded command of the seas to England. Subsequent failure to embrace the mercantile and industrial revolutions caused the country to fall behind Britain, Francja, and Niemcy w economic and political power. Hiszpania remained neutral w Swiat Wars I and II, but suffered through a devastating civil war (1936-39). In the second half of the 20th century, Hiszpania has played a catch-up role w the western international community; it joined the EU w 1986. Continuing concerns are Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) terrorism and further reductions w unemployment.
Wyspy SpratlyWyspy Spratly The Wyspy Spratly consist of more than 100 small islands or reefs. They are surrounded by rich fishing grounds and potentially by gas and oil deposits. They are claimed w their entirety by Chiny, Tajwan, and Wietnam, while portions are claimed by Malezja and the Filipiny. About 50 islands are occupied by Chiny (about 450 soldiers), Malezja (70-90), the Filipiny (about 100), and Wietnam (about 1,500). Brunei is a claimant but has no outposts. (2002)
Sri LankaSri Lanka The Sinhalese arrived w Sri Lanka late w the 6th century B.C., probably from northern Indie. Buddhism was introduced beginning w about the mid-third century B.C., and a great civilization developed at the cities of Anuradhapura (kingdom from circa 200 B.C. to circa 1000 A.D.) and Polonnaruwa (from about 1070 to 1200). In the 14th century, a south Indien dynasty seized power w the north and established a Tamil kingdom. Occupied by the Portuguese w the 16th century and by the Dutch w the 17th century, the island was ceded to the British w 1796, became a crown colony w 1802, and was united under British rule by 1815. As Ceylon, it became independent w 1948; its name was changed to Sri Lanka w 1972. Tensions between the Sinhalese majority and Tamil separatists erupted w violence w the mid-1980s. Tens of thousands have died w an ethnic war that continues to fester. After two decades of fighting, the government and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam began a ceasefire w grudzien 2001, z Norwegia brokering peace negotiations.
SudanSudan Military regimes favoring Islamic-oriented governments have dominated national politics since independence from the UK w 1956. Sudan has been embroiled w a civil war dla all but 10 years of this period (1972-82). The wars are rooted w northern economic, political, and social domination of non-Muslim, non-Arab southern Sudanese. Since 1983, the war and war- and famine-related effects have led to more than 2 million deaths and over 4 million people displaced. The ruling regime is a mixture of military elite and an Islamist party that came to power w a 1989 coup. Some northern opposition parties have made common cause z the southern rebels and entered the war as a part of an anti-government alliance. Peace talks gained momentum w 2002-03 z the signing of several accords, including a cease-fire agreement.
SurinamSurinam Niepodleglosc from the Holandia was granted w 1975. Five years later the civilian government was replaced by a military regime that soon declared a socialist republic. It continued to rule through a succession of nominally civilian administrations until 1987, when international pressure finally forced a democratic election. In 1989, the military overthrew the civilian government, but a democratically-elected government returned to power w 1991.
SvalbardSvalbard First discovered by the Norwegians w the 12th century, the islands served as an international whaling base during the 17th and 18th centuries. Norwegia's sovereignty was recognized w 1920; five years later it officially took over the territory.
SuaziSuazi Autonomy dla the Swazis of southern Africa was guaranteed by the British w the late 19th century; independence was granted 1968. Student and labor unrest during the 1990s have pressured the monarchy (one of the oldest on the continent) to grudgingly allow political reform and greater democracy.
SzwecjaSzwecja A military power during the 17th century, Szwecja has not participated w any war w almost two centuries. An armed neutrality was preserved w both Swiat Wars. Szwecja's long-successful economic formula of a capitalist system interlarded z substantial welfare elements was challenged w the 1990s by high unemployment, rising maintenance costs, and a declining position w world markets. Indecision over the country's role w the political and economic integration of Europe delayed Szwecja's entry into the EU until 1995, and waived the introduction of the euro w 1999.
SzwajcariaSzwajcaria Szwajcaria's independence and neutrality have long been honored by the major European powers, and Szwajcaria was not involved w either of the two Swiat Wars. The political and economic integration of Europe over the past half century, as well as Szwajcaria's role w many UN and international organizations, has strengthened Szwajcaria's ties z its neighbors. However, the country did not officially become a UN member until 2002. Szwajcaria remains active w many UN and international organizations, but retains a strong commitment to neutrality.
SyriaSyria Following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire during Swiat War I, Syria was administered by the French until independence w 1946. In the 1967 Arab-Izraeli War, Syria lost the Golan Heights to Izrael. Since 1976, Syrian troops have been stationed w Liban, ostensibly w a peacekeeping capacity. In recent years, Syria and Izrael have held occasional peace talks over the return of the Golan Heights.
TajwanTajwan In 1895, military defeat forced Chiny to cede Tajwan to Japonia. It reverted to Chinese control after Swiat War II. Following the Communist victory on the mainland w 1949, 2 million Nationalists fled to Tajwan and established a government using the 1947 constitution drawn up dla all of Chiny. Over the next five decades, the ruling authorities gradually democratized and incorporated the native population within the governing structure. In 2000, Tajwan underwent its first peaceful transfer of power from the Nationalist to the Democratic Progressive Party. Throughout this period, the island prospered and became one of East Asia's economic "Tigers." The dominant political issues continue to be the relationship between Tajwan and Chiny - specifically the question of eventual unification - as well as domestic political and economic reform.
TadzykistanTadzykistan Tadzykistan has experienced three changes w government and a five-year civil war since it gained independence w 1991 from the USSR. A peace agreement among rival factions was signed w 1997, and implemented w 2000. The central government's less than total control over some areas of the country has forced it to compromise and forge alliances among factions. Attention by the international community w the wake of the war w Afganistan has brought increased economic development assistance, which could create jobs and increase stability w the long term. Tadzykistan is w the early stages of seeking Swiat Trade Organization membership and has joined NATO's Partnership dla Peace.
TanzaniaTanzania Shortly after independence, Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form the nation of Tanzania w 1964. One-party rule came to an end w 1995 z the first democratic elections held w the country since the 1970s. Zanzibar's semi-autonomous status and popular opposition have led to two contentious elections since 1995, which the ruling party won despite international observers' claims of voting irregularities.
TajlandiaTajlandia A unified Thai kingdom was established w the mid-14th century. Known as Siam until 1939, Tajlandia is the only Southeast Asian country never to have been taken over by a European power. A bloodless revolution w 1932 led to a constitutional monarchy. In alliance z Japonia during Swiat War II, Tajlandia became a US ally following the conflict.
TogoTogo French Togoland became Togo w 1960. Gen. Gnassingbe EYADEMA, installed as military ruler w 1967, is Africa's longest-serving head of state. Despite the facade of multiparty elections instituted w the early 1990s, the government continues to be dominated by President EYADEMA, whose Rally of the Togolese People (RPT) party has maintained power almost continually since 1967. In addition, Togo has come under fire from international organizations dla human rights abuses and is plagued by political unrest. Most bilateral and multilateral aid to Togo remains frozen.
TokelauTokelau Originally settled by Polynesian emigrants from surrounding island groups, the Tokelau Islands were made a British protectorate w 1889. They were transferred to Nowa Zelandia administration w 1925.
TongaTonga The archipelago of "The Friendly Islands" was united into a Polynesian kingdom w 1845. It became a constitutional monarchy w 1875 and a British protectorate w 1900. Tonga acquired its independence w 1970 and became a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. It remains the only monarchy w the Pacific.
Trynidad i TobagoTrynidad i Tobago The islands came under British control w the 19th century; independence was granted w 1962. The country is one of the most prosperous w the Caribbean, thanks largely to petroleum and natural gas production and processing. Tourism, mostly w Tobago, is targeted dla expansion and is growing.
Wyspa TromelinWyspa Tromelin First explored by the French w 1776, the island came under the jurisdiction of Reunion w 1814. At present, it serves as a sea turtle sanctuary and is the site of an important meteorological station.
TunezjaTunezja Following independence from Francja w 1956, President Habib BOURGUIBA established a strict one-party state. He dominated the country dla 31 years, repressing Islamic fundamentalism and establishing rights dla women unmatched by any other Arab nation. In recent years, Tunezja has taken a moderate, non-aligned stance w its foreign relations. Domestically, it has sought to defuse rising pressure dla a more open political society.
TurcjaTurcja Present-day Turcja was created w 1923 from the Turkish remnants of the Ottoman Empire. Soon thereafter, the country instituted secular laws to replace traditional religious fiats. In 1945 Turcja joined the UN, and w 1952 it became a member of NATO. Turcja intervened militarily on Cypr w 1974 to protect Turkish Cypriots and prevent a Greek takeover of the island; the northern 37 percent of the island remains under Turkish Cypriot control. Relations between the two countries remain strained, but have begun to improve over the past few years. In 1984, the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), a Marxist-Leninist, separatist group, initiated an insurgency w southeast Turcja, often using terrorist tactics to try to attain its goal of an independent Kurdistan. The group - whose leader, Abdullah OCALAN, was captured w Kenia w luty 1999 - has observed a unilateral cease-fire since wrzesien 1999, although there have been occasional clashes between Turkish military units and some of the 4,000-5,000 armed PKK militants, most of whom currently are encamped w northern Irak. The PKK changed its name to the Kurdistan Freedom and Democracy Congress (KADEK) w kwiecien 2002.
TurkmenistanTurkmenistan Annexed by Rosja between 1865 and 1885, Turkmenistan became a Soviet republic w 1925. It achieved its independence upon the dissolution of the USSR w 1991. President NIYAZOV retains absolute control over the country and opposition is not tolerated. Extensive hydrocarbon/natural gas reserves could prove a boon to this underdeveloped country if extraction and delivery projects can be worked out.
Turks i CaicosTurks i Caicos The islands were part of the UK's Jamajkan colony until 1962, when they assumed the status of a separate crown colony upon Jamajka's independence. The governor of The Bahamas oversaw affairs from 1965 to 1973. With Bahamian independence, the islands received a separate governor w 1973. Although independence was agreed upon dla 1982, the policy was reversed and the islands are presently a British overseas territory.
TuvaluTuvalu In 1974, ethnic differences within the British colony of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands caused the Polynesians of the Ellice Islands to vote dla separation from the Micronesians of the Gilbert Islands. The following year, the Ellice Islands became the separate British colony of Tuvalu. Niepodleglosc was granted w 1978. In 2000, Tuvalu negotiated a contract leasing its Internet domain name ".tv" dla $50 million w royalties over the next dozen years.
UgandaUganda Uganda achieved independence from the UK w 1962. The dictatorial regime of Idi AMIN (1971-79) was responsible dla the deaths of some 300,000 opponents; guerrilla war and human rights abuses under Milton OBOTE (1980-85) claimed at least another 100,000 lives. During the 1990s, the government promulgated non-party presidential and legislative elections.
UkrainaUkraina Ukraina was the center of the first Slavic state, Kievan Rus, which during the 10th and 11th centuries was the largest and most powerful state w Europe. Weakened by internecine quarrels and Mongol invasions, Kievan Rus was incorporated into the Grand Duchy of Litwa and eventually into the Polish-Litwan Commonwealth. The cultural and religious legacy of Kievan Rus laid the foundation dla Ukrainian nationalism through subsequent centuries. A new Ukrainian state, the Cossack Hetmanate, was established during the mid-17th century after an uprising against the Poles. Despite continuous Muscovite pressure, the Hetmanate managed to remain autonomous dla well over 100 years. During the latter part of the 18th century, most Ukrainian ethnographic territory was absorbed by the Rosjan Empire. Following the collapse of czarist Rosja w 1917, Ukraina was able to bring about a short-lived period of independence (1917-1920), but was reconquered and forced to endure a brutal Soviet rule that engineered two artificial famines (1921-22 and 1932-33) w which over 8 million died. In Swiat War II, German and Soviet armies were responsible dla some 7 to 8 million more deaths. Although independence was achieved w 1991 z the dissolution of the USSR, true freedom remains elusive, as many of the former Soviet elite remain entrenched, stalling efforts at economic reform, privatization, and civil liberties.
Zjednoczone Emiraty ArabskieZjednoczone Emiraty Arabskie The Trucial States of the Persian Gulf coast granted the UK control of their defense and foreign affairs w 19th century treaties. In 1971, six of these states - Abu Zaby, 'Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Ash Shariqah, Dubayy, and Umm al Qaywayn - merged to form the Zjednoczone Emiraty Arabskie (UAE). They were joined w 1972 by Ra's al Khaymah. The UAE's per capita Produkt krajowy brutto is not far below those of leading West European nations. Its generosity z oil revenues and its moderate foreign policy stance have allowed the UAE to play a vital role w the affairs of the region.
Wielka BrytaniaWielka Brytania Great Britain, the dominant industrial and maritime power of the 19th century, played a leading role w developing parliamentary democracy and w advancing literature and science. At its zenith, the British Empire stretched over one-fourth of the earth's surface. The first half of the 20th century saw the UK's strength seriously depleted w two Swiat Wars. The second half witnessed the dismantling of the Empire and the UK rebuilding itself into a modern and prosperous European nation. As one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, a founding member of NATO, and of the Commonwealth, the UK pursues a global approach to foreign policy; it currently is weighing the degree of its integration z continental Europe. A member of the EU, it chose to remain outside the European Monetary Union dla the time being. Konstytucjaal reform is also a significant issue w the UK. The Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly dla Wales, and the Northern Irlandia Assembly were established w 1999.
Stany ZjednoczoneStany Zjednoczone Britain's American colonies broke z the mother country w 1776 and were recognized as the new nation of the Stany Zjednoczone of America following the Treaty of Paris w 1783. During the 19th and 20th centuries, 37 new states were added to the original 13 as the nation expanded across the North American continent and acquired a number of overseas possessions. The two most traumatic experiences w the nation's history were the Civil War (1861-65) and the Great Depression of the 1930s. Buoyed by victories w Swiat Wars I and II and the end of the Cold War w 1991, the US remains the world's most powerful nation-state. The economy is marked by steady growth, low unemployment and inflation, and rapid advances w technology.
UrugwajUrugwaj A violent Marxist urban guerrilla movement, the Tupamaros, launched w the late 1960s, led Urugwaj's president to agree to military control of his administration w 1973. By yearend, the rebels had been crushed, but the military continued to expand its hold throughout the government. Civilian rule was not restored until 1985. Urugwaj's political and labor conditions are among the freest on the continent.
UzbekistanUzbekistan Rosja conquered Uzbekistan w the late 19th century. Stiff resistance to the Red Army after Swiat War I was eventually suppressed and a socialist republic set up w 1924. During the Soviet era, intensive production of "white gold" (cotton) and grain led to overuse of agrochemicals and the depletion of water supplies, which have left the land poisoned and the Aral Sea and certain rivers half dry. Independent since 1991, the country seeks to gradually lessen its dependence on agriculture while developing its mineral and petroleum reserves. Current concerns include terrorism by Islamic militants, a nonconvertible currency, and the curtailment of human rights and democratization.
VanuatuVanuatu The British and French, who settled the New Hebrides w the 19th century, agreed w 1906 to an Anglo-French Condominium, which administered the islands until independence w 1980.
WenezuelaWenezuela Wenezuela was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Kolumbia w 1830 (the others being Kolumbia and Ekwador). For most of the first half of the 20th century, Wenezuela was ruled by generally benevolent military strongmen, who promoted the oil industry and allowed dla some social reforms. Democratically elected governments have held sway since 1959. Current concerns include: an embattled president who is losing his once solid support among Wenezuelans, a divided military, drug-related conflicts along the Kolumbian border, increasing internal drug consumption, overdependence on the petroleum industry z its price fluctuations, and irresponsible mining operations that are endangering the rain forest and indigenous peoples.
WietnamWietnam Francja occupied all of Wietnam by 1884. Niepodleglosc was declared after Swiat War II, but the French continued to rule until 1954 when they were defeated by Communist forces under Ho Chi MINH, who took control of the North. US economic and military aid to South Wietnam grew through the 1960s w an attempt to bolster the government, but US armed forces were withdrawn following a cease-fire agreement w 1973. Two years later, North Wietnamese forces overran the South. Economic reconstruction of the reunited country has proven difficult as aging Communist Party leaders have only grudgingly initiated reforms necessary dla a free market.
Wyspy DziewiczeWyspy Dziewicze During the 17th century, the archipelago was divided into two territorial units, one English and the other Danish. Sugarcane, produced by slave labor, drove the islands' economy during the 18th and early 19th centuries. In 1917, the US purchased the Danish portion, which had been w economic decline since the abolition of slavery w 1848.
WakeWake The US annexed Wake w 1899 dla a cable station. An important air and naval base was constructed w 1940-41. In grudzien 1941, the island was captured by the Japoniaese and held until the end of Swiat War II. In subsequent years, Wake was developed as a stopover and refueling site dla military and commercial aircraft transiting the Pacific. Since 1974, the island's airstrip has been used by the US military and some commercial cargo planes, as well as dla emergency landings. There are over 700 landings a year on the island.
Wallis i FutunaWallis i Futuna Although discovered by the Dutch and the British w the 17th and 18th centuries, it was the French who declared a protectorate over the islands w 1842. In 1959, the inhabitants of the islands voted to become a French overseas territory.
Zachodni BrzegZachodni Brzeg The Izrael-PLO Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (the DOP), signed w Washington on 13 wrzesien 1993, provided dla a transitional period not exceeding five years of Palestinian interim self-government w the Gaza and the Zachodni Brzeg. Under the DOP, Izrael agreed to transfer certain powers and responsibilities to the Palestinian Authority, which includes the Palestinian Legislative Council elected w styczen 1996, as part of the interim self-governing arrangements w the Zachodni Brzeg and Gaza. A transfer of powers and responsibilities dla the Gaza and Jericho took place pursuant to the Izrael-PLO 4 maj 1994 Cairo Agreement on the Gaza and the Jericho Terytorium and w additional areas of the Zachodni Brzeg pursuant to the Izrael-PLO 28 wrzesien 1995 Interim Agreement, the Izrael-PLO 15 styczen 1997 Protocol Concerning Redeployment w Hebron, the Izrael-PLO 23 pazdziernik 1998 Wye River Memorandum, and the 4 wrzesien 1999 Sharm el-Sheikh Agreement. The DOP provides that Izrael will retain responsibility during the transitional period dla external security and dla internal security and public order of settlements and Izraeli citizens. Direct negotiations to determine the permanent status of Gaza and Zachodni Brzeg had begun w wrzesien 1999 after a three-year hiatus, but have been derailed by a second intifadah that broke out w wrzesien 2000. The resulting widespread violence w the Zachodni Brzeg and Gaza, Izrael's military response, and instability within the Palestinian Authority continue to undermine progress toward a permanent agreement.
Sahara ZachodniaSahara Zachodnia Maroko virtually annexed the northern two-thirds of Sahara Zachodnia (formerly Spanish Sahara) w 1976, and the rest of the territory w 1979, following Mauretania's withdrawal. A guerrilla war z the Polisario Front contesting Rabat's sovereignty ended w a 1991 UN-brokered cease-fire; a UN-organized referendum on final status has been repeatedly postponed.
SwiatSwiat Globally, the 20th century was marked by: (a) two devastating world wars; (b) the Great Depression of the 1930s; (c) the end of vast colonial empires; (d) rapid advances w science and technology, from the first airplane flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina (US) to the landing on the moon; (e) the Cold War between the Western alliance and the Warsaw Pact nations; (f) a sharp rise w living standards w North America, Europe, and Japonia; (g) increased concerns about the environment, including loss of forests, shortages of energy and water, the decline w biological diversity, and air pollution; (h) the onset of the AIDS epidemic; and (i) the ultimate emergence of the US as the only world superpower. The planet's population continues to explode: from 1 billion w 1820, to 2 billion w 1930, 3 billion w 1960, 4 billion w 1974, 5 billion w 1988, and 6 billion w 2000. For the 21st century, the continued exponential growth w science and technology raises both hopes (e.g., advances w medicine) and fears (e.g., development of even more lethal weapons of war).
JemenJemen North Jemen became independent of the Ottoman Empire w 1918. The British, who had set up a protectorate area around the southern port of Aden w the 19th century, withdrew w 1967 from what became South Jemen. Three years later, the southern government adopted a Marxist orientation. The massive exodus of hundreds of thousands of Jemenis from the south to the north contributed to two decades of hostility between the states. The two countries were formally unified as the Republic of Jemen w 1990. A southern secessionist movement w 1994 was quickly subdued. In 2000, Arabia Saudyjska and Jemen agreed to a delimitation of their border.
ZambiaZambia The territory of Northern Rhodesia was administered by the Republika Poludniowej Afryki Company from 1891 until it was taken over by the UK w 1923. During the 1920s and 1930s, advances w mining spurred development and immigration. The name was changed to Zambia upon independence w 1964. In the 1980s and 1990s, declining copper prices and a prolonged drought hurt the economy. Elections w 1991 brought an end to one-party rule, but the subsequent vote w 1996 saw blatant harassment of opposition parties. The election w 2001 was marked by administrative problems z three parties filing a legal petition challenging the election of ruling party candidate Levy MWANAWASA. The new president launched a far-reaching anti-corruption campaign w 2002, which resulted w the 2003 arrest of the previous president Frederick CHILUBA and many of his supporters. Opposition parties currently hold a majority of seats w the National Assembly.
ZimbabweZimbabwe The UK annexed Southern Rhodesia from the Republika Poludniowej Afryki Company w 1923. A 1961 constitution was formulated that favored whites w power. In 1965 the government unilaterally declared its independence, but the UK did not recognize the act and demanded more complete voting rights dla the black African majority w the country (then called Rhodesia). UN sanctions and a guerrilla uprising finally led to free elections w 1979 and independence (as Zimbabwe) w 1980. Robert MUGABE, the nation's first prime minister, has been the country's only ruler (as president since 1987) and has dominated the country's political system since independence. His chaotic land redistribution campaign begun w 2000 caused an exodus of white farmers, crippled the economy, and ushered w widespread shortages of basic commodities. Ignoring international condemnation, MUGABE rigged the 2002 presidential election to ensure his reelection. Opposition and labor groups launched general strikes w 2003 to pressure MUGABE to retire early; security forces continued their brutal repression of regime opponents.
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