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Niger is a landlocked, western African country. Historically a gateway between North and sub-Saharan Africa, Niger came under French rule in the late 1890s. After independence from France in 1960, the country was run by a single-party civilian regime, but a combination of devastating drought and accusations of rampant corruption led to a coup in 1974 and the establishment of a military regime. Public pressure to allow multiparty elections resulted in a democratic government in 1993, but political infighting brought the government to a standstill and led to a coup by Col. Ibrahim Bare in 1996. In 1999 Bare was killed in a coup by military officers who promptly restored democratic rule and held elections that brought Tandja to power. As such, Tandja was reelected in 2004. A predominately Tuareg ethnic group emerged in February 2007 -- the Nigerien Movement for Justice (MNJ) -- and attacked several military targets in Niger's northern region throughout 2007 and 2008. Events have since evolved into a fledging insurgency. Niger is one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. The landlocked economy is heavily dependent on rain-fed subsistence agriculture. The country has some of the world’s largest uranium deposits, the main source of its export earnings.

Country Forecast
Major Cities
City Population
Maradi 163,487
Niamey 774,235
Zinder 191,424
Key Data
Region : Africa
Population : 18,360,608
Area Total : 1,267,000 km2
Area Land : 1,266,700 km2
Coast Line : km
Capital : Niamey
Climate : Desert; mostly hot, dry, dusty; tropical in exteme south
Languages : French (official)
Currency : 1 CFAF$ = 100 centimes
Holiday : Republic Day is 18 December (1958), Independence Day is 3 August
Average Daily TemperatureBoundaries
January : 24.20°C / 75.60°F
July : 28.80°C / 83.80°F
Annual Rainfall : 556.2mm / 21.9"
Nigeria 1497km
Chad 1175km
Algeria 956km
Mali 821km
Burkina Faso 628km
Libya 354km
Benin 266km
Ethnic DivisionsReligions
Hausa 56%
Djerma 22%
Tuareg 8%
Fula 8%
Beri Beri (Kanouri) 4%
Arab, Toubou, and Gourmantche 1%
French expatriates 1%
Muslim 80%
Indigenous beliefs and Christians 20%

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