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Country information - Namibia
Country name - conventional long form : Republic of Namibia
Country name - conventional short form : Namibia
Country name - local long form : Republic of Namibia
Country name - local short form : Namibia
Country name - former : German Southwest Africa, South-West Africa
Government type : republic
Capital - name : Windhoek
Capital - time difference : UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
National holiday : Independence Day, 21 March (1990)
Nationality - noun : Namibian(s)
Nationality - adjective : Namibian
Languages : English 7% (official), Afrikaans common language of most of the population and about 60% of the white population, German 32%, indigenous languages 1% (includes Oshivambo, Herero, Nama)
Currency (code) : Namibian dollar (NAD); South African rand (ZAR)
Currency code : NAD; ZAR
Major infectious diseases - degree of risk : high

Namibia is located Southern Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and South Africa. The climate is desert; hot, dry; rainfall sparse and erratic. The terrain is mostly high plateau; Namib Desert along coast; Kalahari Desert in east.


This entry usually highlights major historic events and current issues and may include a statement about one or two key future trends.
Background : South Africa occupied the German colony of South-West Africa during World War I and administered it as a mandate until after World War II, when it annexed the territory. In 1966 the Marxist South-West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) guerrilla group launched a war of independence for the area that was soon named Namibia, but it was not until 1988 that South Africa agreed to end its administration in accordance with a UN peace plan for the entire region. Namibia has been governed by SWAPO since the country won independence in 1990. Hifikepunye POHAMBA was elected president in November 2004 in a landslide victory replacing Sam NUJOMA who led the country during its first 14 years of self rule.

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