Portal:Somalia

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The Somalia Portal

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Somalia, officially the Federal Republic of Somalia is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Ethiopia to the west, Djibouti to the northwest, the Gulf of Aden to the north, the Indian Ocean to the east, and Kenya to the southwest. Somalia has the longest coastline on the mainland of Africa, with a seaboard that stretches 3,025 kilometres (1,880 mi).

In antiquity, Somalia was an important centre for commerce with the rest of the ancient world, it is among the most probable locations of the fabled ancient Land of Punt. During the Middle Ages, several powerful Somali empires dominated the regional trade, including the Ajuuraan State, the Adal Sultanate, the Warsangali Sultanate and the Geledi Sultanate. In the late nineteenth century, through a succession of treaties with these kingdoms, the British and Italians gained control of parts of the coast, and established British Somaliland and Italian Somaliland. In the interior, Muhammad Abdullah Hassan's Dervish State successfully repulsed the British Empire four times and forced it to retreat to the coastal region. Italian occupation lasted until 1941, yielding to British military administration. British Somaliland would remain a protectorate, while Italian Somaliland in 1949 became a United Nations Trusteeship under Italian administration, the Trust Territory of Somaliland. In 1960, the two regions united to form the independent Somali Republic under a civilian government.

Somalia has a population of around 10 million. About 85% of local residents are ethnic Somalis, Somali and Arabic are the official languages of Somalia, both of which belong to the Afro-Asiatic family. Most people in the territory are Muslims, the majority being Sunni.

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A Somali schoolgirl

Somali ([Soomaali] error: {{lang-xx}}: text has italic markup (help), Arabic: الصوماليون‎) are an ethnic group located in the Horn of Africa, also known as the Somali Peninsula. The overwhelming majority of Somalis speak the Somali language, which is part of the Cushitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family. Ethnic Somalis number around 15-17 million and are principally concentrated in Somalia (more than 9 million[1]), Ethiopia (4.6 million[2]), Yemen (a little under 1 million), northeastern Kenya (2,7 million), Djibouti (350,000), and an unknown but large number live in parts of the Middle East, North America and Europe.

Did you know...

  • ...that the Somali Ajuuraan State excelled in hydraulic engineering and fortress building?
Statue of Mohammed Abdullah Hassan in Mogadishu.

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  1. ^ CIA World Factbook: Somalia, people and Map of the Somalia Ethnic groups (CIA according de Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection). The first gives 15% non-Somalis and the second 6%. Used 90% of current population of Somalia.
  2. ^ Ethiopian Central Statistical Agency. "2007 Ethiopian census, first draft" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-05-06.