Somalia sits in Eastern Africa, east of Ethiopia, bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. Its natural resources include, tin, gypsum, bauxite, copper, salt, natural gas, uranium and largely unexploited reserves of iron ore. Somalia’s population of 10,085,638 (July 2012 est.) consists of Somali (85%), Bantu and other non-Somali (15%, including 30,000 Arabs) ethnic groups. The official language is Somali and the primary religion is Sunni Muslim. On July 1, Somalia celebrates the Foundation of the Somali Republic (in July 1960, by a merger of British Somaliland and Italian Somaliland).
Although a transitional government was created in 2004, other regional and local governing bodies continue to exist and control various regions of the country, including the self-declared Republic of Somaliland in northwestern Somalia and the semi-autonomous State of Puntland in northeastern Somalia. There is currently no constitution in place, but a Transitional Federal Charter was established in February 2004 and is expected to serve as the basis for a future constitution.

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