Portal:Tanzania

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The Tanzania Portal

Flag of Tanzania
Coat of Arms of Tanzania
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The United Republic of Tanzania (/ˌtænzəˈnə/; Swahili: Jamhuri ya Muungano wa Tanzania) is a sovereign state in central East Africa bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west, and Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique to the south. The states eastern borders lie in the Indian Ocean.

The United Republic of Tanzania is a unitary republic composed of 26 mkoa (regions). The current head of state is President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, elected in 2005. Since 1996, the capital of Tanzania has been Dodoma, where government offices are located. Between independence and 1996 the major coastal city of Dar es Salaam had been the country's political capital. Today Dar es Salaam remains the principal commercial city of Tanzania, and is major seaport for the country and its landlocked neighbours.

The name Tanzania is a portmanteau of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, the two states united in 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, which later the same year was renamed the United Republic of Tanzania.

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Dar es Salaam
Credit: Muhammad Mahdi Karim

Skyline of the Dar es Salaam city center.

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Aftermath of Nairobi bombing

In the 1998 United States embassy bombings (August 7, 1998) hundreds of people were killed in simultaneous truck bomb explosions at the United States embassies in the major East African cities of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya. The attacks, linked to local members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad brought Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri to American attention for the first time, and resulted in the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation placing bin Laden on its Ten Most Wanted list.

The bombings are widely believed to have been revenge for American involvement in the extradition, and alleged torture, of four members of Egyptian Islamic Jihad (EIJ) who had been arrested in Albania in the two months prior to the explosions and extradited to Egypt. Between June and July, Ahmad Isma'il 'Uthman Saleh, Ahmad Ibrahim al-Sayyid al-Naggar, Shawqi Salama Mustafa Atiya and Mohamed Hassan Tita were all renditioned from Albania to Egypt, with the cooperation of the United States, accused of participating in the assassination of Rifaat el-Mahgoub, as well as a later plot against the Khan el-Khalili market in Cairo. The following month, a communique was issued warning the US that a "response" was being prepared to repay them for their interference.

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Carved door in Zanzibar
Credit: Paul Brockmeyer

A traditional carved door showing Arabic calligraphy in Zanzibar. Zanzibar has a long history of Arab influence and was controlled by the Sultan of Oman from 1698–1861.

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Wildlife of Tanzania

Male Olive Baboon
Credit: P1050483

The Olive Baboon (Papio anubis), also called the Anubis Baboon, is a member of the family Cercopithecidae (Old World monkeys). The species is the most widely spread of all baboons: it is found in 25 countries throughout Africa, extending south from Mali to Ethiopia and to Tanzania. Isolated populations are also found in some mountainous regions of the Sahara. It inhabits savannahs, steppes, and forest areas.

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Memoiren einer arabischen Prinzessin (Ruete) p 002.jpg

Emily Ruete (1844–1924) was born in Zanzibar as Sayyida Salme, Princess of Zanzibar and Oman. She was a daughter of Sayyid Said bin Sultan Al-Busaid, Sultan of Zanzibar and Oman.

Sayyida Salme was born on 30 August 1844 as daughter of Sultan Said and Jilfidan, a Circassian concubine. Her first years were spent in the huge Bet il Mtoni palace, by the sea about eight kilometers north of Stone Town. (The palace was mostly demolished in 1914). She grew up bilingual in Arabic and Swahili. In 1851 she moved to Bet il Watoro, the house of her brother Majid bin Said of Zanzibar, the later sultan. Her brother taught her to ride and to shoot. In 1853 she moved with her mother to Bet il Tani. She secretly taught herself to write, a skill which was unusual for women at the time.

When her father died in 1856 she was declared of age, twelve years old, and received her paternal heritage. This consisted of a plantation with a residence, and 5,429 pounds. After her father's death, her brother Sayyid Thuwaini bin Said al-Said became Sultan of Muscat and Oman, while her brother Majid became Sultan of Zanzibar.

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