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African island country in the Indian Ocean / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The Comoros,[note 1] officially the Union of the Comoros,[note 2] is an archipelagic country made up of three islands in Southeastern Africa, located at the northern end of the Mozambique Channel in the Indian Ocean. Its capital and largest city is Moroni. The religion of the majority of the population, and the official state religion, is Sunni Islam. Comoros proclaimed its independence from France on 6 July 1975. A member of the Arab League, it is the only country in the Arab world which is entirely in the Southern Hemisphere. It is a member state of the African Union, the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie, the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation, and the Indian Ocean Commission. The country has three official languages: Shikomori, French and Arabic.

Quick facts: Union of the .plainl...
Union of the Comoros
  • Udzima wa Komori (Ngazidja Comorian)
  • Union des Comores (French)
  • جمهورية القمر المتحدة (Arabic)
  • Jamhuriyat al-Qumur al-Muttaḥida
  • "Unité – Solidarité – Développement" (French)
  • وحدة، تضامن، تنمية (Arabic)
  • "Unity – Solidarity – Development"
Anthem: Udzima wa ya Masiwa  (Comorian)
The Unity of the Great Islands
Location of the Comoros (circled)
Location of the Comoros (circled)
and largest city
11.69°S 43.26°E / -11.69; 43.26
Official languages
Ethnic groups
GovernmentFederal presidential republic
Azali Assoumani
Moustadroine Abdou
LegislatureAssembly of the Union
 Discovery by Portuguese Empire
 French colony of Mayotte
25 April 1841
 Province of French Madagascar
31 March 1914
27 October 1946
 Internal autonomy
22 December 1961
 Independence from France
6 July 1975
 Federal Islamic Republic
1 October 1978[2]
23 December 2001[lower-alpha 2]
2,235[3] km2 (863 sq mi) (170th)
 Water (%)
 2019 estimate
850,886 (160th)
457/km2 (1,183.6/sq mi) (27th)
GDP (PPP)2023 estimate
Increase $3.432 billion[4]
 Per capita
Increase $3,463[4]
GDP (nominal)2023 estimate
Increase $1.364 billion[4]
 Per capita
Increase $1,377[4]
Gini (2013)Positive decrease 45.0[5]
medium · 141st
HDI (2021)Decrease 0.558[6]
medium · 156th
CurrencyComorian franc (KMF)
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
Driving sideright
Calling code+269
ISO 3166 codeKM

At 1,659 km2 (641 sq mi), the Comoros is the third-smallest African country by area.[7] In 2019, its population was estimated to be 850,886.[8][9] The sovereign state consists of three major islands and numerous smaller islands, all of the volcanic Comoro Islands with the exception of Mayotte. Mayotte voted against independence from France in a referendum in 1974, and continues to be administered by France as an overseas department. France has vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution that would have affirmed Comorian sovereignty over the island.[10][11][12][13] Mayotte became an overseas department and a region of France in 2011 following a referendum which was passed overwhelmingly.

The Comoros were likely first settled by Austronesian/Malagasy peoples, Bantu speakers from East Africa, and seafaring Arab traders.[14] It became part of the French colonial empire during the 19th century, before its independence in 1975. It has experienced more than 20 coups or attempted coups, with various heads of state assassinated.[15][16] Along with this constant political instability, it has one of the worst levels of income inequality of any nation, and ranks in the medium quartile on the Human Development Index.[17] Between 2009 and 2014, about 19% of the population lived below the international poverty line of US$1.90 a day by purchasing power parity.[18]

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