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Inmaa Group of Companies Republic of Djibouti
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About Djibouti One Group - Strong Vision


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Capital(and largest city) Djibouti
11°36′N, 43°10′E
Official languages Arabic and French
Demonym Djiboutian
Government Parliamentary republic
   -  President Ismail Omar Guelleh
   -  Prime Minister Dileita Mohamed Dileita
Independence from France 
   -  Date June 27, 1977 
Area
   -  Total 23,200 km² (149th)
8,958 sq mi 
   -  Water (%) 0.09 (20 km² / 7.7 mi²)
Population
   -  July 2007 estimate 496,374[1] (160th)
   -  2000 census 460,700 
   -  Density 34 /km² (168th)
88 /sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2005 estimate
   -  Total $1.641 billion 164th)
   -  Per capital> $2,070 141st)
HDI (2004) 0.494 (low) (148th)
Currency Franc (DJF)
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)
   -  Summer (DST) not observed (UTC+3)
Calling code +253

 

 
     

History

 

The history of Djibouti is recorded in poetry and in songs of its nomadic people and goes back thousands of years to a time when Djiboutians traded hides and skins for the perfumes and spices of ancient Egypt, India, and China. Through close contacts with the Arabian peninsula for more than 1,000 years, the Somali and Afar ethnic groups in this region became among the first on the African continent to adopt Islam. French interest developed in the nineteenth century when the area was ruled by the sultan of Raheita, Tadjoura and Gobaad. The French bought the anchorage of Obock in 1862 and expanded it eventually to a colony called French Somaliland with essentially the current boundaries. In 1967 the area became the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas.

The Republic of Djibouti gained its independence from France on June 27, 1977. Djibouti is a Somali, Afar and Islamic country which regularly takes part in Islamic affairs as well as Arab meetings.

 

Politics

Djibouti is a semi-presidential republic, with executive power in the central government, and legislative power in both the government and parliament. The parliamentary party system is dominated by the People's Rally for Progress and the President who currently is Ismail Omar Guelleh. The country's current constitution was approved in September 1992. Djibouti is a one party dominant state with the People's Rally for Progress in power. Other parties are allowed, but the main opposition, Union for a Presidential Majority, boycotted the 2005 and 2008 elections leaving all of the legislative seats to the PRP.

 

Geography

Djibouti lies in Northeast Africa on the Gulf of Aden at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. It has 314 km (195 mi) of coastline and shares a 113 km (70 mi) border with Eritrea, 337 km (209 mi) with Ethiopia and 58 km (36 mi) with Somalia (total 506 km/314 mi). The country is mainly a stony desert, with scattered plateaus and highlands. It is 8,900 square miles.
 


Regions and Districts

 

Djibouti is sectioned into 5 regions and one city. It is further subdivided into 11 districts.

The regions and city are:

  • Ali Sabieh Region (Region d'Ali Sabieh)
  • Arta Region (Region d'Arta)
  • Dikhil Region (Region de Dikhil)
  • Djibouti (city) (Ville de Djibouti)
  • Obock Region (Region d'Obock)
  • Tadjourah Region (Region de Tadjourah)

Economy

 

The economy of Djibouti is based on service activities connected with the country's strategic location and status as a free trade zone in northeast Africa. Two-thirds of the inhabitants live in the capital city, the remainder being mostly nomadic herders. Scant rainfall limits crop production to fruits and vegetables, and most food must be imported.

Djibouti provides services as both a transit port for the region and an international transshipment and refueling center. It has few natural resources and little industry. The nation is, therefore, heavily dependent on foreign assistance to help support its balance of payments and to finance development projects. Daniel R. Sutton, an American salt miner, is also overseeing some $70 million operation to industrialize the collection of Djibouti’s plentiful salt in the Region Lake Asal. There are gold miners from India, geothermal experts from Iceland, Turkish hotel managers, Saudi oil engineers, French bankers and American military contractors

Religion

 

Djibouti's population is predominantly Muslim. Islam is observed by 94% of Djibouti's population (about 444,440), while the remaining six percent, primarily consisting of foreign nationals, follow various Christian traditions.

Just like Islam in other countries, every town and village in Djibouti has a mosque where people go to worship. Tombs of their former religious leaders and those considered holy are known as sacred spaces. The most famous sacred space for Islam in Djibouti is the tomb of Sheikh Abu Yazid, which is found in the Goda Mountains

In addition to the Islamic calendar, Muslims in Djibouti also recognize New Year's Day (January 1) and Labor Day (May 1) as holidays

Culture

 

Djiboutian attire reflects the region's hot and arid climate. When not dressed in Westernized clothing such as jeans and t-shirts, men typically wear the macawiis, which is a sarong-like garment worn around the waist.

Among nomads, many wear a loosely wrapped white cotton robe called a tobe that goes down to about the knee, with the end thrown over the shoulder (much like a Roman toga). Women typically wear the dirac, which is a long, light, diaphanous voile dress made of cotton or polyester that is worn over a full length half-slip and a brassiere. Married women tend to sport head-scarves referred to as shash, and also often cover their upper body with a shawl known as garbasaar. Unmarried or young women, however, do not always cover their heads.

Traditional Arabian garb such as the male jellabiya (jellabiyaad in Somali) and the female niqab is also commonly worn. For some occasions such as festivals, women may adorn themselves with specialized jewelry and head-dresses similar to those worn by the Berber tribes of the maghreb.

 

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