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General information
Common nameLiberia
NameRepublic of Liberia
MottoThe love of liberty brought us here

"All Hail, Liberia, Hail!"
Largest cityMonrovia
Official languagesEnglish
GovernmentUnitary presidential constitutional republic
PresidentEllen Johnson Sirleaf
Vice PresidentJoseph Boakai
Speaker of the HouseAlex J. Tyler
Chief JusticeJohnnie Lewis
LegislatureLegislature of Liberia
Upper HouseSenate
Lower HouseHouse of Representatives
Established by the American Colonization Society1822
Independence26 July 1847
Current constitution6 January 1986
Total Area43000 sq mi (111370 km2) (103rd)
Water %13.514
Population Est.3786764
Population census3476608 (130th) (2008)
Density (pop.)35.5/km2 (180th) (92.0/sq mi)
GDP PPP$1.691 billion (2010)
GDP (PPP) per capita$392
GDP (nominal)$974 million (2010)
GDP (nominal) per capita$226
Other information
HDI(+) 0.300 (2010) (low) (162nd)
CurrencyLiberian dollar1 (LRD)
Time zoneGMT (UTC)
- Summer (DST)not observed (UTC)
Drives on theright
Calling code231

     Home | Country | Liberia

Liberia c-enaudio=En-us-Liberia.ogglaɪˈbɪəriə, officially the Republic of Liberia, is a country in West Africa. It is bordered by Sierra Leone on the west, Guinea on the north and Côte d'Ivoire on the east. Liberia's coastline is composed of mostly mangrove forests while the more sparsely populated inland consists of forests that open to a plateau of drier grasslands. The country possesses 40% of the remaining Upper Guinean rainforest. Liberia has a hot equatorial climate, with significant rainfall during the May to October rainy season and harsh harmattan winds the remainder of the year. Liberia covers an area of 111369 km2 (42999.8 sqmi) and is home to about 3.7 million people. English is the official language, while over 30 indigenous languages are spoken within the country.

Liberia is one of only two modern countries in Sub-Saharan Africa without roots in the European Scramble for Africa. Beginning in 1820, the region was colonized by freed American slaves with the help of the American Colonization Society, a private organization that believed ex-slaves would have greater freedom and equality in Africa. Slaves freed from slave ships were also sent there instead of being repatriated to their countries of origin. In 1847, these colonists founded the Republic of Liberia, establishing a government modeled on that of the United States and naming the capital city Monrovia after James Monroe, the fifth president of the United States and a prominent supporter of the colonization. The colonists, known as Americo-Liberians, monopolized the political and economic sectors of the country despite comprising only a small percentage of the largely indigenous population.

The country began to modernize in the 1940s following investment by the United States during World War II and economic liberalization under President William Tubman. Liberia was a founding member of the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity. A military coup overthrew the Americo-Liberian establishment in 1980, marking the beginning of political and economic instability and two successive civil wars that left approximately 250,000 people dead and devastated the country's economy. A 2003 peace deal led to democratic elections in 2005. Today, Liberia is recovering from the lingering effects of the civil war and related economic dislocation, with about 85% of the population living below the international poverty line.

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