|This article needs additional citations for verification. (October 2011)|
|Area||999 km2 (386 sq mi)|
|Density||305 /km2 (790 /sq mi)|
|Languages||Dutch, English, Papiamento|
|Government||3 constituent countries
3 special municipalities
The term Dutch Caribbean refers to the islands of the Kingdom of the Netherlands that are located in the Caribbean and their inhabitants. It is also a term sometimes used to refer to the Caribbean Netherlands, which consists of some of the Dutch Caribbean islands but not all.
Three of the six main islands under Dutch sovereignty are constituent countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: Aruba, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten (which actually comprises only the southern half of the island of Saint Martin). The three remaining islands of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba are special municipalities of the Netherlands, which is the fourth constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (and mainly located in Europe). These are collectively known as the Caribbean Netherlands. There are also several smaller islands, like Klein Curaçao and Klein Bonaire, that belong to one of the island countries or special municipalities.
All the islands in the Dutch Caribbean were formerly part of the Netherlands Antilles. Aruba gained autonomy decades earlier than the other island countries, seceding as a separate country in 1986. Curaçao and Sint Maarten followed upon the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles in 2010, while Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba chose instead to integrate into the Netherlands.
There are several acronyms that indicate groups of islands of the Dutch Caribbean:
- ABC islands, for Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao;
- BES islands, for Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba;
- SSS islands, for Saba, Saint Martin, and Sint Eustatius.
(1 Jan 2010)
(inh. per km²)
(part of the Netherlands)
- "Visa for the Dutch Caribbean". Netherlands Embassy in the United Kingdom. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
- "Rijksdienst Carbische Nederland (Rijksdienst Dutch Caribbean)". Government of the Netherlands. Retrieved 26 July 2012.
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