Comoros

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Union of the Comoros

Seal of Comoros
Seal
Motto: 
  • وحدة، تضامن، تنمية (Arabic)
  • "Unité – Solidarité – Développement" (French)
  • "Unity – Solidarity – Development"
Anthem: Udzima wa ya Masiwa  (Comorian)
(English: "The Unity of the Great Islands")
Location of the  Comoros  (dark blue) – in Africa  (light blue & dark grey) – in the African Union  (light blue)
Location of the  Comoros  (dark blue)

– in Africa  (light blue & dark grey)
– in the African Union  (light blue)

Location of Comoros
Capital
and largest city
Moroni
11°41′S 43°16′E / 11.683°S 43.267°E / -11.683; 43.267
Official languages
Ethnic groups
Religion
Sunni Islam
Demonym(s)Comorian
GovernmentFederal presidential republic
• President
Azali Assoumani
• President of the Assembly
Abdou Ousseni
LegislatureAssembly of the Union
Formation
• Discovery by Portuguese explorers
1503
• Ngazidja, Ndzuwani, Mwali under French rule
1886
• Protectorate of the Comoros
6 September 1887
• Territory under French Madagascar
9 April 1908
27 October 1946
• State of Comoros
22 December 1961
• Independence from France
6 July 1975
• Federal and Islamic Republic of Comoros
24 May 1978
• Union of the Comoros
23 December 2001
17 May 2009
Area
• Total
1,659 km2 (641 sq mi) (171tha)
• Water (%)
negligible
Population
• 2018 estimate
850,688 (160th)
• Density
457/km2 (1,183.6/sq mi) (27th)
GDP (PPP)2019 estimate
• Total
$2.446 billion[1] (178th)
• Per capita
$2,799[1] (177th)
GDP (nominal)2019 estimate
• Total
$1.179 billion[1] (182nd)
• Per capita
$1,349[1] (165th)
Gini (2013)Positive decrease 45.0[2]
medium · 141st
HDI (2018)Increase 0.538[3]
low · 156th
CurrencyComorian franc (KMF)
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
Driving sideright
Calling code+269
ISO 3166 codeKM
Internet TLD.km
  1. Excluding Mayotte, an overseas department of France.
  2. Excluding Mayotte.

Comoros (officially called Union of the Comoros) is a small island nation in the Indian Ocean. It is between Madagascar and mainland Africa. The capital is Moroni on Grande Comore. The population (except for Mayotte) is about 798,000 people.

The Comoros Islands are in the Indian Ocean, between Mozambique and Madagascar. It is the southernmost member state of the Arab League.

There are 4 islands from west to east: Grande Cormore, Moheli, Anjouan and Mayotte. All the islands are of volcanic origin. Islam is the official religion of Comoros with over 90% of the population being Sunni Muslims.

Mayotte is also a territory that is claimed by Comoros but is under occupation by the French as an overseas territory. The other islands form the independent state of Comoros.

The country has a history with many coup d'état since independence in 1975. As of 2008, about half the people live below the international poverty line of US$1.25 a day.[4]

Mount Karthala is the country's highest point. Karthala is an active shield volcano on Grand Cormore. It had a minor eruption in May 2006.

Geography[change | change source]

The Comoros is formed by Ngazidja (Grande Comore), Mwali (Mohéli) and Nzwani (Anjouan), the three major islands in the Comoros Archipelago. There are also many minor islets. The islands are officially known by their Comorian language names. International sources still use their French names (given in parentheses above). The capital and largest city is Moroni on Ngazidja.

At 2,034 km2 (785 sq mi), it is one of the smallest countries in the world. The interiors of the islands vary from steep mountains to low hills.

Climate[change | change source]

The climate is generally tropical and mild. The rainy season runs from December to April. It is called kashkazi/kaskazi, meaning north monsoon. The cool, dry season is from May to November. It is called kusi, meaning south monsoon.

The temperature reaches an average of 29–30 °C (84–86 °F) in March, the hottest month. The average low is 19 °C (66 °F) in the dry season. The islands are rarely subject to cyclones.

The islands have their own ecoregion, the Comoros forests.

Government[change | change source]

The President of the Comoros is both head of state and head of government. The constitution was adopted on 23 December 2001. It was last amended in May 2009.

In November 1975, the Comoros became the 143rd member of the United Nations. The citizens of Mayotte chose to become French citizens and keep their island as a French territory.

There is a small standing army. This includes a 500-member police force and a 500-member defense force. A treaty with France provides navy protection for territorial waters.

Cities[change | change source]

Moroni Harbour

Anjouan

Grande Comore

Mohéli

Economy[change | change source]

The Comoros is one of the world's poorest countries. Agriculture is the leading sector of the economy. Agriculture includes fishing, hunting, and forestry.

The Comoros is the world's largest producer of ylang-ylang. It is a large producer of vanilla.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Comoros". International Monetary Fund. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
  2. "GINI index". World Bank. Archived from the original on 30 April 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  3. "Human Development Report 2019" (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. 10 December 2019. Retrieved 10 December 2019.
  4. Human Development Indices, Table 3: Human and income poverty, p. 35. Retrieved on 1 June 2009

Other websites[change | change source]

  • Media related to Comoros at Wikimedia Commons
  • Comoros travel guide from Wikivoyage