Nicaragua (/ˌnɪkəˈrɑːɡwə, -ˈræɡ-, -ɡjuə/ (About this sound listen); Spanish: [nikaˈɾaɣwa]), officially the Republic of Nicaragua (Spanish: About this sound República de Nicaragua (help·info)), is the largest country in the Central American isthmus, bordered by Honduras to the north, the Caribbean to the east, Costa Rica to the south, and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Managua is the country’s capital and largest city and is also the third-largest city in Central America, behind Tegucigalpa and Guatemala City. The multi-ethnic population of six million includes people of indigenous, European, African, and Asian heritage. The main language is Spanish. Native tribes on the Mosquito Coast speak their own languages and English.
Originally inhabited by various indigenous cultures since ancient times, the Spanish Empire conquered the region in the 16th century. Nicaragua gained independence from Spain in 1821. The Mosquito Coast followed a different historical path, with the English colonizing it in the 17th century and later coming under the British rule, as well as some minor Spanish interludes in the 19th century. It became an autonomous territory of Nicaragua in 1860 and the northernmost part of it was later transferred to Honduras in 1960. Since its independence, Nicaragua has undergone periods of political unrest, dictatorship, and fiscal crisis, leading to the Nicaraguan Revolution of the 1960s and 1970s and the Contra War of the 1980s. Nicaragua is a representative democratic republic.
The mixture of cultural traditions has generated substantial diversity in folklore, cuisine, music, and literature, particularly the latter given the literary contributions of Nicaraguan poets and writers, such as Rubén Darío. Known as the “land of lakesNiger, also called the Niger (/ˈnaɪdʒər/ (About this sound listen), or /niːˈʒɛər/; French: [niʒɛʁ]) officially the Republic of the Niger, is a landlocked country in Western Africa named after the Niger River. Niger is bordered by Libya to the northeast, Chad to the east, Nigeria and Benin to the south, Burkina Faso and Mali to the west, and Algeria to the northwest. Niger covers a land area of almost 1,270,000 km2 (490,000 sq mi), making it the largest country in West Africa. Over 80% of its land area lies in the Sahara Desert. The country’s predominantly Islamic population of about 21 million mostly clusters in the far south and west of the country. The capital city is Niamey, located in Niger’s southwest corner.
Niger is a developing country, consistently ranks near the bottom in the United Nations’ Human Development Index (HDI); it was ranked 187th of 188 countries for 2015. Much of the non-desert portions of the country are threatened by periodic drought and desertification. The economy is concentrated around subsistence, with some export agriculture in the more fertile south, and export of raw materials, especially uranium ore. Niger faces serious challenges to development due to its landlocked position, desert terrain, inefficient agriculture, high fertility rates without birth control, and the resulting overpopulation, the poor educational level and the poverty of its people, the lack of infrastructure, the poor health care, and the environmental degradation.
Nigerien society reflects a diversity drawn from the long independent histories of its several ethnic groups and regions and their relatively short period living in a single state. Historically, what is now Niger has been on the fringes of several large states. Since independence, Nigeriens have lived under five constitutions and three periods of military rule. After the military coup in 2010, Niger became a democratic, multi-party state. A majority of the population lives in rural areas, and have little access to advanced education. As of 2015, 71.3% of Niger’s population cannot read, one of the lowest literacy rates in the world.
and volcanoes”, Nicaragua is also home to the second-largest rainforest of the Americas. The country has set a goal of 90% renewable energy by the year 2020. The biological diversity, warm tropical climate and active volcanoes make Nicaragua an increasingly popular tourist destination.
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