The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, located in Central Asia, is a landlocked nation slightly smaller than Texas. It has a total land area of 647,500 sq km (250,001 sq mi).


The Republic of Albania is situated in southeastern Europe and is bordered to the south by Greece, to the east by the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), to the north by Serbia and Montenegro, and to the west by the Adriatic Sea. The total area is 28,748 sq km (17,864 sq mi), of which over two-thirds is mountainous and the rest river valleys and coastal lowlands.


The second largest country in Africa, Algeria is located in North Africa, between the Mediterranean Sea in the north and the Sahara desert in the south. It borders Morocco on the northwest, the Western Sahara and Mauritania on the southwest, Mali and Niger on the south, and Tunisia and Libya on the east.


The Principality of Andorra, despite its name, has been a constitutional republic since 1993. It is a landlocked state between Spain and France, and its culture, economy, and political life reflect the influence of those two neighboring countries.


The Republic of Angola is situated on the Atlantic (west) coast of Africa, just south of the Congo River. It is bordered to the north and east by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (former Zaire), to the southeast by Zambia and to the south by Namibia.

Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua and Barbuda (pronounced "ann-TEE-guh" and "bar-BYOO-duh") is made up of two main islands along the outer edge of the Leeward Islands of the Eastern Caribbean. It is estimated that as of July 2002, there were 67,448 inhabitants.


The Argentine Republic is located on the southern half of the South American continent and extends to the southernmost tip of the continent. It is bordered to the east by the Atlantic Ocean and Uruguay, to the northeast by Brazil and Paraguay, to the northwest by Bolivia, and to the west by Chile.


The Republic of Armenia is bordered by Georgia to the north, Iran to the south, Turkey to the east, and Azerbaijan to the east and south. It has a total land area of 29,800 sq km (11,500 sq mi).


The Commonwealth of Australia is situated in the South Pacific and Indian Oceans, southeast of Asia. To the north are Indonesia and Papua New Guinea and to the east is New Zealand.


The Republic of Austria is a landlocked nation that is located in the center of Europe. Germany and the Czech and Slovak Republics are to the north; Switzerland and the tiny principality of Liechtenstein are to the west; Italy and Slovenia are to the south; and Hungary is to the east.


The Azerbaijan Republic is bordered by the Caspian Sea to the east, Iran to the south, Russia and Georgia to the north, and Armenia to the west. Azerbaijan has a total land area of 86,600 sq km (33,400 sq mi).

The Bahamas

The Bahamas is a nation of islands, an archipelago that stretches southeasterly for more than 805 km (500 mi) south of Florida to the edge of the Caribbean Sea. The chain comprises more than 700 islands, but less than 30 of them are actually inhabited.


Bahrain officially became a constitutional monarchy and changed its designation from State of Bahrain to Kingdom of Bahrain in February of 2002. The country is located 24 km (15 mi) off the coast of Saudi Arabia and 28 km (17 mi) off the coast of Qatar in the Persian Gulf.


Among the world's poorest nations, the People's Republic of Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan) is located in southern Asia. Nearly surrounded by India, except for a short southeastern frontier with Myanmar (Burma) and a southern coastline of 575 km (357 mi) on the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh has a total area of 144,000 sq km (55,600 sq mi), roughly the size of Wisconsin.


With a total area of 430 sq km (166 sq mi), Barbados is the easternmost island in the Windward chain of the Caribbean islands. The population was estimated at 277,000 in 2002.


Bounded by Russia on the east, Latvia and Lithuania on the north, Poland on the west, and Ukraine on the south, Belarus occupies some 207,600 sq km (80,154 sq mi) and has been a major east–west passage in both war and peace for more than 1,000 years.


The Kingdom of Belgium lies in the northwest corner of Europe and shares borders with France, Luxembourg, Germany, and the Netherlands. Even by European standards, Belgium is a small country with a total area of 30,510 sq km (11,781 sq mi), making it smaller than Switzerland or the Netherlands.


Belize is situated on the Caribbean coast of Central America, south of Mexico and east of Guatemala. It has an area of 22,966 sq km (8,867 sq mi) and a 280-km (174-mi) coastline.


Known as the Republic of Dahomey before December 1975, Benin was a former French colony until independence was granted on 1 August 1960. This West African nation borders on Nigeria to the east, Burkina Faso and Niger to the north, and Togo to the west.


The Kingdom of Bhutan is a small landlocked nation encompassing 47,000 sq km (18,147 sq mi). The country is bordered to the east, south, and west by India and to the north and northwest by China.


The Republic of Bolivia is a landlocked country in the center of South America. Bordering Brazil to the north and northeast, Paraguay to the southeast, Chile and Peru to the west, and Argentina to the south, Bolivia is the least developed country in South America.


Bosnia-Herzegovina, one of five successor states to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY), is located in southeastern Europe, between Croatia to the north and west and Serbia and Montenegro (which has also been known as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) to the east. Its land area is 51,129 sq km (19,741 sq mi).


The Republic of Botswana is a landlocked country in southern Africa, bordered by Namibia to the west and north, Zimbabwe to the northeast, and South Africa to the south and southeast. The national territory encompasses 600,370 sq km (231,804 sq mi) and the southern and western regions are geographically defined by the Kalahari Desert.


The Federative Republic of Brazil dominates the South American continent, encompassing 8.5 million sq km (3.29 million sq mi), which represents 40% of the continental land mass. Brazil is bounded to the east and northeast by the Atlantic Ocean; to the north by French Guiana, Suriname, Guyana, and Venezuela; to the west by Colombia and Peru; to the southwest by Bolivia and Paraguay; and to the south by Argentina and Uruguay.


Officially known as the Sultanate of Brunei (Negara Brunei Darussalam), Brunei is situated on the northwest coast of the island of Kalimantan (Borneo), most of which is Indonesian territory, and faces the South China Sea. Both of its two parts are surrounded by Sarawak, which is part of Malaysia.


Bulgaria is situated in the Balkan Peninsula in southeastern Europe. Its territory covers 110,910 sq km (42,811 sq mi).

Burkina Faso

The Republic of Burkina Faso is a landlocked nation in West Africa. It borders Mali on the northwest and Niger on the northeast; to the south and southeast are Benin and Togo; to the south and southwest Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire.


The small, landlocked Republic of Burundi lies in the center of Africa, bordered by Rwanda to the north, Tanzania to the south and east, and Democratic Republic of the Congo (DROC—formerly Zaire) to the northwest. Lake Tanganyika forms the southwestern border of the country.


Cambodia is one of the smallest nations in mainland Southeast Asia, occupying 181,040 sq km (69,900 sq mi). Its neighbors include Thailand on the west and north, Laos on the northeast, and Vietnam on the east.


The Republic of Cameroon, located in Central Africa, has an area of 475,440 sq km (183,567 sq mi). It lies on the Gulf of Guinea and is bordered by Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Chad, and Nigeria.


Canada, which occupies the northern part of North America, is a vast but sparsely populated country. Canada's land area is 9.976,185 sq km (3,851,809 sq mi), and its population was estimated at 31.9 million in 2002.

Cape Verde

Cape Verde is a nation made up of ten islands and five islets. The archipelago nation is situated in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 500 km (311 mi) west of Dakar, Senegal.

Central African Republic

The Central African Republic (CAR), which was known as the Central African Empire between 1976 and 1979, is a landlocked nation located in the geographic center of the African continent. It shares a northern border with Chad and a southern border with both the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo.


The Republic of Chad became independent from the French Equatorial African Federation in 1960. It has a land area of 1,284,000 sq km (495,800 sq mi) and is bordered by Libya, Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon, Central African Republic, and Sudan.


The Republic of Chile is long and narrow, covering an area of 756,950 sq km (292,260 sq mi). It lies along the Pacific coast of Latin America, bordered by Peru and Bolivia to the north, Argentina to the east, and Cape Horn to the south.


The People's Republic of China is located in central and eastern Asia. Its total area is 9,596,960 sq km (3,705,407 sq mi), making China the third-largest country in the world.


The Republic of Colombia is located in the northwest corner of South America. Bordering Ecuador and Peru to the south, Brazil to the southwest, and Venezuela to the east, Colombia is the only South American country with a coastline on both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.


Located in the Indian Ocean between Mozambique and the northwest coast of Madagascar, the Federal Islamic Republic of the Comoros is a chain of three small volcanic islands covering a total area of 2,170 sq km (835 sq mi). The population of the Comoros was estimated at 614,382 in 2002, with over half the people living on the main island, Grand Comore, where the capital city of Moroni is located.

Congo, Democratic Republic of the

The Democratic Republic of Congo, formerly known as the Republic of Zaire, is the third-largest country in Africa. The country covers 2,345,410 sq km (905,563 sq mi), most of it contained within the Congo River basin.

Congo, Republic of the

The Republic of the Congo lies in Western Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean and Gabon to the west, Cameroon and Central African Republic to the north; the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) lies across the Congo River to the country's east and south. The capital is Brazzaville, and the country is sometimes referred to as Congo-Brazzaville (to distinguish it from its neighbor, Democratic Republic of Congo, known as Congo-Kinshasa).

Costa Rica

The Republic of Costa Rica is bounded on the north by Nicaragua and on the southeast by Panama, with coastlines on the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. The total area is 50,560 sq km (19,560 sq mi).

Côte D'ivoire

The République de Côte d'Ivoire (Republic of Ivory Coast) is located in West Africa with a 507 km (315 mi) Gulf of Guinea coastline as its southern border and Liberia and Guinea to the west and northwest, Mali and Burkina Faso to the north and northeast and Ghana to the west. Its area is 322,463 sq km (124,503 sq mi).


The Republic of Croatia, one of the successor states to the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, is bordered by Slovenia on the north, Hungary on the northeast, and Serbia and Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina to the east. Croatia has a 5,790 km (3,590 mi) coastline along the Adriatic Sea.


The Republic of Cuba is situated in the Caribbean Sea, 145 km (90 mi) south of Florida. This archipelago is composed of two main islands, Cuba and the Isle of Youth (formerly Isle of Pines), and about 1,600 keys and islets.


The Republic of Cyprus, the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, is located south of Turkey and west of the coast of Syria and Lebanon. It has a total area of 9,250 sq km (3,571 sq mi).

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is a small, landlocked country in central Europe consisting of two lands, Bohemia and Moravia. To the country's west lies Germany, to the north, Poland, to the south, Austria, and to the east, Slovakia.


The Kingdom of Denmark is situated in the north of Europe, between the Baltic and North seas. Its southern border with Germany is the only land connection to the continent.


The Republic of Djibouti, formerly known as French Somaliland and subsequently renamed the French Territory of Afars and the Issas, became an independent republic in May 1977. Located in the Horn of Africa, just south of the Bab el Mandeb Strait, Djibouti occupies the strategic entrance into the Red Sea.


The Commonwealth Dominica is a Caribbean island about one-half of the way from Puerto Rico to Trinidad and Tobago. Its total area of 754 sq km (291 sq mi) consists of one island a bit larger than four times the size of Washington, D.C.

Dominican Republic

Known by its inhabitants as la Republica Dominicana, the Dominican Republic is located in the West Indies. It occupies the eastern two-thirds of the island of Hispañola, which it shares with Haiti on the west.

East Timor

East Timor, also known as Timor Lorosa'e, became an independent nation in 2002. With a total area of 14,609 sq km (5,641 sq mi) and a population estimated in 2002 at 952,618, East Timor consists of the eastern half of Timor island, plus a small enclave, Oecussi, in West Timor.


The Republic of Ecuador is located on the western coast of South America, north and west of Peru and south and west of Colombia. Ecuador has an area of 283,560 sq km (109,483 sq mi).


The Arab Republic of Egypt is located in North Africa but is commonly referred to as part of the Middle East. It is bounded at its northeastern tip by Israel, on the east by the Red Sea, on the south by Sudan, on the west by Libya, and on the north by the Mediterranean Sea.

El Salvador

The Republic of El Salvador is located on the Pacific coast of Central America. It is the smallest and most densely populated of the five Central American republics and the only one without a coastline on the Caribbean Sea.

Equatorial Guinea

The Republic of Equatorial Guinea (La República de Guinea Ecuatorial) is in west central Africa at latitude 2º north and longitude 10º east. The country's territory comprises the coastal enclave of Rio Muni, situated between the southwest corner of Cameroon and the northwest corner of Gabon; the island of Bioko, off the coast of Cameroon; and Annobon and Corisco in Corisco Bay.


The State of Eritrea, a former province of Ethiopia, voted its own independence from that country in April 1993 in a United Nations (UN) sponsored election. That election ended 30 years of civil war in the new nation, which borders on the Red Sea in the east, the Sudan in the west and north, and Ethiopia and the Red Sea in the south.


The Republic of Estonia lies on the shores of the Baltic Sea and the Gulfs of Riga and Finland, and borders Latvia and Russia. The total land area of Estonia is 45,226 sq km (17,462 sq mi).


The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia is situated in northeastern Africa. To the north lies Eritrea and the Red Sea; to the east, Djibouti and Somalia; to the south, Kenya; and to the west, Sudan.


The Republic of Fiji comprises 322 islands spread over 700,000 sq km (270,000 sq mi) of the southwest Pacific Ocean. Total land area is slightly more than 18,270 sq km (7,054 sq mi).


The Republic of Finland lies in northern Europe, bordering on Norway to the far north, Sweden to the west, and Russia to the east. In area, Finland covers 338,145 sq km (130,559 sq mi); its western shores extend approximately 1,164 km (710 mi) along the Baltic Sea.


The French Republic is the largest west European country, encompassing 551,670 sq km (220,668 sq mi), including the Mediterranean island of Corsica. It is bounded to the west by the Atlantic Ocean; to the north by the English Channel; to the east by Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy; and to the south by the Mediterranean Sea and Spain.


Gabon (formally known as the Gabonese Republic) lies on the Atlantic coast of Central Africa. It shares borders with Equatorial Guinea to the northwest, the Congo Republic to the east and south, and Cameroon to the north.

The Gambia

The Republic of the Gambia is named after the River Gambia which flows the length of the country's territory, extending eastward about 470 km (292 mi). Nestled on the sides of the banks of the river, The Gambia's land area of 11,295 sq km (4,361 sq mi) measures only about 24 km (15 mi) in width for most of its length and 50 km (31 mi) at its widest point.


Georgia borders Russia to the north, Armenia and Azerbaijan to the southeast, Turkey to the southwest, and the Black Sea to the west. Its land area is 66,700 sq km (26,807 sq mi).


The Federal Republic of Germany is situated in north central Europe and shares a border with Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Switzerland and Austria to the south, and France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg to the west. From 1949 to 1990, Germany was divided into West Germany and East Germany; the two were unified through a treaty effective 3 October 1990.


The Republic of Ghana occupies 238,540 sq km (92,100 sq mi) of territory in western Africa. The capital is Accra, located on the southern coast.


Greece, known officially as the Hellenic Republic, is located in the southern tip of the Balkan Peninsula. Greece consists of the mainland and numerous islands, both on the Ionian and Aegean Seas, covering a total size of 131,957 sq km (51,146 sq mi).


Grenada is the most southerly of the Windward chain of West Indian islands. To its south is Trinidad and Tobago, and to its north is the island of St.


In this agrarian country, just 2% of the population owns 70% of the land. Agriculture contributes about 25% of the gross domestic product (GDP), over half of all exports, and employs nearly 60% of the labor force.


The Republic of Guinea is located on the west coast of Africa. It is bordered, clockwise from the northwest, by Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, Mali, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and the Atlantic Ocean.


Officially known as the Republic of Guinea-Bissau and formerly known as Portuguese Guinea until its independence from Portugal in 1974, Guinea-Bissau is situated on the west coast of Africa. To the north is Senegal; to the east and south is the Republic of Guinea; and to the west is the Atlantic Ocean.


The Republic of Guyana is situated on the northeastern shoulder of South America. The only English-speaking country on the continent, it is bound on the west by Venezuela, on the east by Suriname, and on the south and southwest by Brazil.


The Republic of Haiti occupies the western third of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, with a total area of 27,750 sq km (10,714 sq mi). The capital is Port-au-Prince, located in the southeastern region of the country.



The Republic of Hungary lies in the Carpathian Basin in the heart of central Europe. To Hungary's west lies Austria; to the north, Slovakia; to the east, Ukraine and Romania; and to the south, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia.


The Republic of Iceland occupies an island in the North Atlantic, just touching the Arctic Circle. To the northwest is Greenland, to the east is Norway and to the south is the United Kingdom.


India dominates the southern part of the Asian continent, with an area of 3,287,590 sq km (1,269,346 sq mi). It is bordered to the northwest by Pakistan and to the north– northeast by China, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, and Myanmar.


Inhabited in 2002 by an estimated 231 million people, the Republic of Indonesia ranks fourth in population among the countries of the world. It consists of a 13,000 island archipelago stretching out over 1,919,440 sq km (741,096 sq mi) in Southeast Asia, at the point where the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean meet.


The Islamic Republic of Iran is bordered on the north by the Caspian Sea and the central Asian republics of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan, on the east by Afghanistan and Pakistan, on the south by the Persian Gulf, and on the west by Iraq and Turkey. Iran has an area of 1,648,000 sq km (636,290 sq mi).


The Republic of Iraq (al-Jumhuriyah al-Iraqiyah) is a landlocked country, except for its 58 km (36 mi) coastline at the Persian Gulf. Iraq is bounded by Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria, and Turkey.


The Republic of Ireland is situated on a small island in the Atlantic Ocean, located approximately 80 km (50 mi) to the west of Great Britain. The two countries are separated by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and the St.


The State of Israel is located on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea, bounded by Lebanon to the north, Syria to the northeast, Jordan to the east and southeast, and Egypt to the southwest. An 18 km (11 mi) strip of coastline along the Gulf of Aqaba gives Israel access to the Red Sea.


The Italian Republic, a southern European peninsula, is bordered on the north by Switzerland and Austria, on the northeast by Slovenia, and on the northwest by France and Monaco. Included in the Italian Republic are the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, as well as smaller groups of islands in the Mediterranean Sea.



Japan is an East Asian nation consisting of four main islands: Honshu, Hokkaido, Shikoku, and Kyushu. Its neighbors consist of Russia, the People's Republic of China, South Korea, and North Korea.


The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is a landlocked country, except for its 26 km (16 mi) coastline along the Gulf of Aqaba, which provides access to the Red Sea. Its area occupies 91,880 sq km (35,475 sq mi), bordered on the north by Syria, northeast by Iraq, east and south by Saudi Arabia, and on the west by Israel.


The Republic of Kazakhstan is located in the heart of the Eurasian landmass. Covering 2.7 million sq km (1.05 million sq mi), the land area is 12% of the former Soviet Union.


The Republic of Kenya is situated on Africa's east coast. It is bordered to the northeast by Somalia, to the north by Ethiopia, to the northwest by Sudan, to the west by Uganda, and to the south by Tanzania.


The Republic of Kiribati consists of 33 coral atolls of three groups (Gilbert group, Phoenix Islands, and Line Islands), scattered over 7,770,000 sq km (3,000,000 sq mi) of the central Pacific Ocean. Its neighbors are Nauru to the west; Samoa, Tuvalu, and Tokelau Islands to the south.

Korea, Democratic People's Republic of

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea is located on the northern half of the Korean peninsula. It is bordered by the People's Republic of China to the northwest, Russia to the northeast, and South Korea to the southeast.

Korea, Republic of

The East Asian nation of the Republic of Korea, also known as South Korea, shares the Korean Peninsula with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, which is also known as North Korea. Its topography consists of mountainous terrain to the north and east and plains to the south and east.


The State of Kuwait is located at the head of the Persian/Arabian Gulf, surrounded on the north and west by Iraq, and on the south by Saudi Arabia. Its area is 17,820 sq km (6,880 sq mi), including its share of the neutral zone jointly controlled with Saudi Arabia.


Kyrgyzstan (pronounced "KIR-gih-stan") borders Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the east, and Tajikistan and China to the south and west. It has a total land size of 198,500 sq km (76,640 sq mi).


The Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) is a landlocked nation, which lies between Vietnam and Thailand and also borders Cambodia, China, and Myanmar. With an estimated area of 236,000 sq km (91,120 sq mi), Laos is made up of 89% mountainous terrain and dominated by tropical forests and jungles.


The Republic of Latvia borders on the Baltic Sea, the Gulf of Riga, Estonia, Lithuania, Russia, and Belarus. A total land area of 63,688 sq km (24,590 sq mi) makes Latvia comparable in size to West Virginia.


The Republic of Lebanon is located in the Middle East, bordered on the north and east by Syria and on the west by the Mediterranean Sea. Lebanon's area is 10,452 sq km (4,036 sq mi).


The Kingdom of Lesotho (pronounced "leh-SOO-too") is a landlocked enclave of 30,355 sq km (11,720 sq mi), surrounded by the Republic of South Africa. It is a country of rugged mountainous terrain, dissected by deep river valleys at elevations of 8,100 to 17,700 m (approximately 5,000 to 11,000 ft) above sea level.


The Republic of Liberia is located on the Atlantic coast of the African continent and is bordered to the northwest by Sierra Leone, to the north by Guinea, and to the east by Côte d'Ivoire. It occupies a total area of 111,370 sq km (43,000 sq mi).


Officially known as the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Libya is situated in the north of Africa. It is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Egypt to the east, Sudan to the southeast, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west.


Located along the Rhine River in the Alps mountain range, the Principality of Liechtenstein (Fürstentum Liechtenstein) is bordered in the east and north by Austria and to the south and west by Switzerland. Liechtenstein is one of the smallest countries in the world with an area of only 160 sq km (61.8 sq mi).


The Republic of Lithuania borders the Baltic Sea, Latvia, Poland, Belarus, and Russia's Kaliningrad oblast. It has a total land area of 65,201 sq km (25,174 sq mi).


The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg is one of the smallest countries in Western Europe, encompassing only 2,586 sq km (999 sq mi). Wedged among three countries, Germany to the east, Belgium to the north and west, and France to the south, Luxembourg's geographic location provides its inhabitants with the advantage of having prosperous neighbors that help to fuel its economy.


The Former Yugoslave Republic of Macedonia spans 25,713 sq km (9,928 sq mi) and is surrounded by Serbia and Montenegro to the north, Albania to the west, Bulgaria to the east, and Greece to the south. The capital is Skopje, (pronounced "SKOPE-jeh") situated on the Vardar River.


The Democratic Republic of Madagascar is located in the Indian Ocean, approximately 386 km (240 mi) off the southeast coast of Africa. It is the fourth-largest island in the world, covering an area of 587,041 sq km (226,657 sq mi).


The landlocked Republic of Malawi, formerly called Nyasaland, became an independent nation on 6 July 1964, and a republic in 1966. Malawi's neighbors include Tanzania to the northeast, Mozambique to the west and southwest, and Zambia to the east and northeast.


Malaysia's estimated 22.7 million people (2002) come from a multitude of ethnic and religious backgrounds and are spread out over 329,757 sq km (127,584 sq mi). Malaysia is divided by the South China Sea into West Malaysia (the 11 states on the narrow Malay peninsula that stretches south from the Asian continent) and East Malaysia (the states of Sarawak and Sabah on the northern part of the island of Borneo).


The Republic of Maldives (pronounced "MALL-deeves") comprises a chain of 1,200 small islands extending north to south for 764 km (475 mi) and 207 km (129 mi) east to west in the Indian Ocean. Cape Comorin, India's southernmost extremity, 482 km (300 mi) to the northeast, and Sri Lanka, 644 km (400 mi) across the Laccadive Sea to the east, are the nearest land masses.


The Republic of Mali, formerly the French Soudan, is a landlocked nation in West Africa. The mighty Niger River and its tributaries run through much of the southern half of the country, but the northern half is made up of the Sahara and Sahel region bordering the desert.


The Republic of Malta is an island nation situated in the central Mediterranean Sea between Sicily and the North African mainland. It comprises an archipelago of three main islands: Malta, Gozo, and Comino.

Marshall Islands

The Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) comprises 29 coral atolls (19 inhabited) and five coral pinnacles (four inhabited). These islands form two roughly parallel chains called Ratak (Sunrise) and Ralik (Sunset), located between 160º and 173º east longitude, and between 4º and 20º north latitude.


The Islamic Republic of Mauritania is bordered on the northwest by the Western Sahara, on the north by Morocco, on the east and southeast by Mali, and on the south by Senegal. Its total area is 1,030,700 sq km (297,950 sq mi).


The Republic of Mauritius lies in the Indian Ocean approximately 800 km (497 mi) east of Madagascar. It is comprised of the volcanic island of Mauritius as well as the Rodrigues, the Agalega islands, and the Cargados Carajos shoals.


The United States of Mexico is situated between the Gulf of Mexico to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west, it neighbors the United States to the north, and Guatemala and Belize to the south and southeast. Mexico's total area is 1,980,000 sq km (764,478 sq mi), and the population was estimated at 103 million in 2002.

Micronesia, Federated States of

The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) consists of 607 islands lying in a broad eastward sweep across 2.5 million sq km (965,250 sq mi) of the Western Pacific Ocean, between the equator and 14 degrees south latitude. These are part of an archipelago that originally appeared on European maps as the Caroline Islands.


The Republic of Moldova (formerly named the Moldovan SSR), the second smallest of the former Soviet republics, straddles the River Dniestr (pronounced NYEH-stir) in the center of Europe. It borders Romania and Ukraine and lies adjacent to a small portion of the Black Sea.


The Principality of Monaco is a celebrated European microstate. The enclave is 21 km (13 mi) from Italy on the Mediterranean coast, surrounded on three sides by France.


Mongolia is a large landlocked country sandwiched between two larger neighbors, China and Russia. Located at the center of the Asian continent, it covers 1,566,500 sq km (694,100 sq mi).


The Kingdom of Morocco is located on the westernmost part of North Africa. It occupies a strategic location that controls the lower half of the Strait of Gibraltar on the Mediterranean Sea while enjoying a long coastline on the Atlantic Ocean.


Officially known as the People's Republic of Mozambique and formerly known as Portuguese East Africa, Mozambique is situated in southern Africa. Mozambique is a long country that straddles the Indian ocean to the east; to the south are Swaziland and South Africa; to the west, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Malawi; and to the north, Tanzania.


The Union of Myanmar (Burma) is the largest country on the Southeast Asian mainland, covering 678,500 sq km (261,970 sq mi). It shares borders with Bangladesh and India to the west, China to the north, and Laos and Thailand to the east.


Namibia, formerly known as South-West Africa, became independent on 21 March 1990. Long considered Africa's lost colony, it was colonized by Germany for 36 years before South Africa took control during World War I (1913–18).


The Republic of Nauru (pronounced "NAH-roo") is distinctive in many ways. With an area of less than 22 sq km (little more than 8 sq mi), Nauru is the world's smallest independent nation.


The Kingdom of Nepal is a small, land-locked country in South Asia which lies between the Tibetan region of China to the north and India to the east, south, and west. Occupying an area of 140,800 sq km (54,362 sq mi), Nepal is well known for its rugged and scenic beauty.

The Netherlands

The Kingdom of the Netherlands is the largest of the three Benelux countries, the other two being Belgium and Luxembourg. The country shares its borders with Belgium to the south and Germany to the east; the northern and western shores face the North Sea.

New Zealand

The Dominion of New Zealand is an island nation situated in the South Pacific Ocean. Its closest neighbor is Australia, which lies approximately 2,400 km (1500 mi) to the northwest across the Tasman Sea.


The Republic of Nicaragua is the largest and least densely populated country in Central America. Approximately the size of New York State, the 120,254 sq km region (74,738 sq mi) is home to 5,023,818 inhabitants (2002 estimate).


The Republic of Niger, the largest nation in West Africa, occupies an area of 1,267,000 sq km (489,191 sq mi). It shares borders with seven other countries: Libya and Algeria to the north, Chad to the east, Nigeria and Benin to the south, and Burkina Faso and Mali to the west.


The Federal Republic of Nigeria occupies 923,768 sq km (336,667 sq mi) with a 2002 population estimate of 130 million, making it Africa's most populous country. The nation's capital city, Ajuba, is centrally located in the nation's interior.


The Kingdom of Norway occupies the western portion of the Scandinavian peninsula. The country's northern regions are in the Arctic Circle and share a 167 km (104 mi) border with Russia, an important factor influencing Norwegian foreign policy.


Known as Muscat and Oman prior to August 1970, the Sultanate of Oman occupies the extreme east and southeast of the Arabian Peninsula. It is surrounded on the northwest by the United Arab Emirates (UAE), on the west by Saudi Arabia, and on the extreme southwest by Yemen.


Pakistan, officially known as the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is located in the northwest corner of the Indian subcontinent, and is surrounded by Afghanistan, Iran, China, India, and the Arabian Sea. It is comprised of four provinces: Sind, Baluchistan, the North West Frontier Province, and Punjab.


The Republic of Palau (pronounced "pull-OW"), is a collection of six island groups located in the western reaches of Oceania about 800 km (500 mi) east of the Philippines and 966 km (600 mi) north of Indonesia. Almost 350 islands form this Micronesian archipelago, but most are tiny and sparsely populated or uninhabited.


The Republic of Panama is a Central American country of 78,200 sq km (30,193 sq mi). It shares a western border with Costa Rica and an eastern border with Colombia.

Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea (PNG) is the Pacific Island nation that lies immediately north of Australia. It comprises the eastern half of the huge island of New Guinea, together with some 600 islands to the east, including the Bismarck Archipelago and Bougainville.


In the heart of South America lies the small Republic of Paraguay. This landlocked country is bordered by Bolivia on the north and northwest, by Brazil on the east, and by Argentina on the south and west.


The Republic of Perú is located on the west coast of the South American continent, bordered to the north by Ecuador and Colombia, to the east by Brazil and Bolivia, and to the south by Chile. The third largest South American country, Peru's territory of 1.28 million sq km (496,222 sq mi) encompasses three distinct geographical areas: a narrow coastal plain along the country's 2800 km (1400 mi) Pacific Ocean coastline; the high sierra of the Andes; and the interior region of foothills, tropical rainforest and lowlands which includes the headwaters of the Amazon.


The Republic of the Philippines is located on the southeast rim of Asia. Its total area of 300,000 sq km (115,831 sq mi) is composed of over 7,100 islands which stretch from north to south for almost 1,850 km (1,150 mi).


The Republic of Poland encompasses an area of 312,685 sq km (120,728 sq mi) that is largely flat plains, with the exception of mountains along the southern border. To the north lies the Baltic Sea.


The Portuguese Republic is located on the western portion of the Iberian Peninsula in Western Europe. To the west lies the Atlantic Ocean and to the north and east lies its only bordering neighbor, Spain.


The country of Qatar is located on a peninsula extending into the Persian Gulf from the Arabian mainland. Qatar is bordered by Oman, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and across the Gulf of Bahrain from Iran.


Romania lies in southeastern Europe. Its geography is influenced by the Carpathian Mountains and the Danube River.


Russia, officially called the Russian Federation, was by far the largest republic of the former USSR. Its estimated 2002 population of 145 million accounted for slightly more than half the Soviet total.


The Republic of Rwanda is a small land-locked country in East Africa, occupying 26,340 sq km (10,170 sq mi). It is bordered by Burundi to the south, Tanzania to the east, Uganda to the north, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the east.

St. Kitts and Nevis

The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis (St.

St. Lucia

Located in the southern end of the crescent formed by the Windward Islands group in the Caribbean Sea, St. Lucia is an irregularly shaped oval, 44 km (27 mi) long and 23 km (14 mi) wide.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines

St. Vincent and the Grenadines is located in the Windward Islands group of the eastern Caribbean, south of St.


In July 1997, the Independent State of Western Samoa officially dropped "Western" from the country's name, sharpening the contrast between its status as an independent nation and that of the U.S. Territory of American Samoa.

San Marino

The Republic of San Marino is a landlocked state on the Italian peninsula about 225 km (140 mi) north of Rome and between the Italian regions of Emilia-Romagna and Marchesa. Situated on the slopes of Mount Titano, San Marino claims to be the oldest republic in Europe.

São TomÉ and Príncipe

The Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe consists of two islands, São Tomé and Príncipe, located off Africa's west coast. Combined, the two islands comprise 964 sq km (372 sq mi), making it second only to the Seychelles Islands as Africa's smallest nation.

Saudi Arabia

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was founded in 1932 when King Abdul Aziz al-Saud, commonly known in the West as Al-Saud, consolidated his conquests. Saudi Arabia occupies about 80% of the Arabian peninsula and has an area of 2,149,690 sq km (829,995 sq mi).


Located in West Africa, midway between Arab-Mediterranean North Africa and the tropical rain forest countries along the Gulf of Guinea, the Republic of Senegal covers an area of 197,161 sq km (75,750 sq mi). Senegal was originally colonized by the Portuguese, who were followed later by the French.

Serbia and Montenegro

Serbia and Montenegro is made up of the republics of Serbia and Montenegro, and is one of the five successor states to Tito's Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. It borders on Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia to the west; Hungary to the north; Romania and Bulgaria to the east; and Albania and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to the south, with a 100 km (62 mi) shoreline on the Adriatic Sea.


The Republic of Seychelles is an island chain in the western Indian Ocean, located 1,600 km (1,000 mi) off the East African coast. The southernmost of its 115 islands is only 210 km (130 km) north of Madagascar.

Sierra Leone

The Republic of Sierra Leone is located on the coast of West Africa, bisected by the 8th degree of latitude. It is bordered by Guinea on the northwest and northeast, and by Liberia on the southeast.


The Republic of Singapore is a city-state located on the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. Singapore's total area of 637.5 sq km (246 sq mi) is comprised of a single large island and 50 other islets.


Slovakia is located in Central Europe and shares its borders with five states: Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Ukraine. Its total area is 48,800 sq km (18,842 sq mi).


The Republic of Slovenia, one of the five successor states to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, is bordered by Austria to the north, Italy to the west, Croatia to the south, and Hungary to the east. It has 40 km (25 mi) of shoreline on the Adriatic Sea.

Solomon Islands

Lying to the east of Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands are a scattered double chain of islands, forming the third largest archipelago in the South Pacific. The land area totals more than 27,500 sq km (10,640 sq mi) spread over 1.35 million sq km (521,235 sq mi) of ocean.


Somalia occupies the area known as the "horn" of Africa, with coastline fronting the Gulf of Aden on the north and the Indian Ocean to the east. It is bordered on the northwest by Djibouti, on the west by Ethiopia, and by Kenya to the southwest.

South Africa

The Republic of South Africa, located at the southern tip of the African continent, is bordered to its northeast by Swaziland, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe, to the north by Botswana, and to the northwest by Namibia. Lesotho, an independent kingdom, is an enclave within South Africa.


The Kingdom of Spain occupies four-fifths of the Iberian peninsula in Southwestern Europe. The national territory also includes the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea, the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean, and a few small enclaves in Morocco.

Sri Lanka

The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (formerly called Ceylon), is a teardrop-shaped island country in the Indian Ocean, situated off the southeastern coast of India. The Maldive Islands lie to its west.


The Republic of the Sudan, historically known as the land of Kush, borders on eight neighboring states and is the largest country in Africa. To the north of Sudan are Egypt and Libya; to the west are Chad and the Central African Republic; to the south are Zaire, Uganda and Kenya; and to Sudan's east are Ethiopia and the Red Sea.


The Republic of Suriname (pronounced "suh-ri-NAM-uh," but also pronounced in English without the last syllable) is situated on the north central coast of South America and covers an area of 163,270 sq km (63,039 sq mi). More than 95% of the country's area was once covered by tropical forest, and efforts to preserve it have resulted in a loss of less than 10% to development.


The Kingdom of Swaziland, surrounded by South African territory but for a short border with Mozambique, lies in Africa's southeastern corner. Topographically diverse, Swaziland's 17,363 sq km (6,704 sq mi) area changes from rugged, mountainous terrain in the west to low plains in the east.


The Kingdom of Sweden, situated in northern Europe between Norway and Finland, is part of the Scandinavian peninsula. The total area is 449,964 sq km (173,731 sq mi) with an estimated population of 8.9 million in 2002.


The Swiss Confederation is located in the heart of Western Europe and is bordered by Germany, France, Italy, Austria, and Liechtenstein. Of the country's 41,292 sq km (15,943 sq mi), 60% are covered by the Alps and contain some of the highest mountain peaks in Europe.


The Syrian Arab Republic covers an area of 184,050 sq km (71,043 sq mi) and is bordered on the north by Turkey, on the east and southeast by Iraq, on the south by Jordan, on the southwest by Israel, and on the west by Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea. The capital of Syria and its major city is Damascus.


Taiwan, officially known as the Republic of China (ROC) since 1949, is a semitropical island about 145 km (90 mi) off the southeastern coast of mainland China. With a total land area of 35,203 sq km (13,592 sq mi), Taiwan has an estimated 22,603,000 inhabitants (February, 2003.) The P'eng-hu (Pescadores) Islands and 13 scattered offshore islands, including Quemoy and Matsu, are also part of Taiwan.


The Republic of Tajikistan borders Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, China to the east, and Afghanistan to the south. Tajikistan is only 20 miles away from Pakistan on one section of its southern border, separated by a narrow Afghan corridor.


The United Republic of Tanzania was created by the formal union of Tanganyika, on the East African mainland, and the island nation of Zanzibar (comprised of the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba). Tanzania is bordered to the east by the Indian Ocean; to the north by Uganda and Kenya; to the west by Rwanda, Burundi, and Zaire; and to the south by Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique.


The Kingdom of Thailand is located in the heart of Southeast Asia's mainland. To its northwest is Myanmar (Burma); to the northeast, Laos; to the southeast, Cambodia; and to the south, Malaysia.


The Togolese Republic is a West African country whose political culture reflects its colonial history and the economic roller coaster of post-independence Africa. Situated along a narrow north-south axis, Togo stretches across several ecological zones.


As in all Polynesian cultures, kinship and collectivism predominate. Even today, groups based on kinship are often formed to carry out activities.

Trinidad and Tobago

The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago lies in the southern Caribbean just off the coast of Venezuela. The total area of Trinidad and Tobago is 5,128 sq km (1,980 sq mi).


The Republic of Tunisia is located on the Mediterranean shores of North Africa between Algeria on the west and Libya on the east. It has an area of 163,610 sq km (63,170 sq mi) and a population estimated at 9.8 million in 2002, most of whom are Arabs.


The Republic of Turkey covers an area of 780,580 sq km (301,382 sq mi) in Europe and Asia. Turkey's neighbors include Greece and Bulgaria on the west, Syria and Iraq on the south, Iran on the east, and the former Soviet republics of Armenia and Georgia on the northeast.


The Republic of Turkmenistan borders on Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to the north and east, Iran and Afghanistan to the south, and the Caspian Sea to the west. It covers a total land area of 488,100 sq km (188,455 sq mi).


The remote Pacific Island nation of Tuvalu consists of a chain of nine atolls situated a few degrees south of the equator and just west of the international date line. Its nearest neighbors are Kiribati (formerly the Gilbert Islands) to the north, Rotuma and Wallis Island to the south, the Solomon Islands to the west, and Tokelau to the east.


The Republic of Uganda, a landlocked equatorial East African country, is bordered by Zaire to the west, the Sudan to the north, Kenya to the east, and Rwanda, Tanzania and Lake Victoria to the south. The capital is Kampala, located on the northern shore of Lake Victoria.


Bounded by Poland, Romania, and Moldova to the west, the Black Sea to the south, Russia to the east, and Belarus to the north, Ukraine covers 603,700 sq km (233,100 sq mi) and had an estimated population of 48.4 million in 2002. The capital is the city of Kiev, which has 2.6 million inhabitants.

United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a federation of seven former Trucial States (emirates): Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ras at Khaimah, Ajman, Umm al-Qaiwain, and Fujairah. These states were known as the Trucial States because of truces concluded with the United Kingdom in the 19th century.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, as it is officially called, is situated across the English Channel in northwest Europe and is comprised of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The United Kingdom (UK) has a total area of 244,820 sq km (94,525 sq mi) and an estimated population of 59.8 million in 2002.

United States

The United States of America is located in the North American continent, bordering Canada to the north and Mexico to the south. Alaska sits to the northwest of Canada, and the Hawaiian Islands are situated in the Pacific Ocean, midway between the west coast of the United States and eastern Asia.


Slightly more than halfway down the South Atlantic coast of South America lies the Eastern Republic of Uruguay, second smallest country in South America, and a state where sheep outnumber people eight to one. Nestled between the southern tip of Brazil and a section of Argentina's eastern border, Uruguay covers 176,215 sq km (68,037 sq mi).


The Republic of Uzbekistan is by far the most populous of the predominantly Muslim Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union. This landlocked nation shares borders with the other former Soviet republics of Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Kazakhstan, as well as with Afghanistan.


The Republic of Vanuatu is the name that these South Pacific islands adopted when they became an independent nation in 1980. Formerly, the archipelago was known as the New Hebrides, the name given to them by the English explorer James Cook in 1774.

Vatican City

The official name of the Vatican, or Vatican City as it is inter-changeably called, is Lo Stato de la Citta del Vaticano (State of the Vatican City). It is not a country, but rather an independent city-state and is the smallest state in the world.


The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela sits on the northern tip of the continent of South America, directly east of Colombia. Its northern boundary is 2,800 km (1,740 mi) of Caribbean Sea coastline.


The Socialist Republic of Vietnam extends 1,650 km (1,025 mi) along the eastern part of the Indochina peninsula. It is bordered by China to the north, Laos and Cambodia to the west, and the South China Sea and the Gulf of Tonkin to the east.


The Republic of Yemen was established on 22 May 1990 from the union of the two formerly independent states of the Yemen Arab Republic (YAR) and People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (PDRY). Yemen borders on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Sultanate of Oman, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Aden, and the Red Sea.


The Republic of Zambia is a landlocked country located in the heart of southern Africa. The national territory occupies 752,614 sq km (290,584 sq mi) and consists primarily of grasslands and forests.


The Republic of Zimbabwe is a landlocked nation in south-central Africa bordered by South Africa to its south, Botswana to the west, Zambia to the south, and Mozambique to its north and east. Most of its 390,580 sq km (150,803 sq mi) occupies fertile plateaus and mountainous regions between the Zambezi and Limpopo Rivers.