Libya: Location, History, Size, Population, & Government

About the location, history, size, population, and government of the country Libya.



Location--On the north coast of Africa, between the Mediterranean on the north and Niger and Chad on the south, between Tunisia and Algeria on the west and Egypt and Sudan on the east.

How Created--Once a territory of Turkey, then Italy, modern Libya was formed by the UN in 1949 by uniting Tripolitania, Cyrenaica, and Fezzan.

Size--681,200 sq. mi. (1,764,240 sq. km.).

Population--2.3 million: Arab-Berber, 96.9%; Italian and other, 3.1%. 97.2% Muslim, 2.4% Christian, 0.4% Jewish and other.

Who Rules--A 12-man military junta, called the Revolutionary Command Council, headed by Chairman and President Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi. The 2,000 Soviet-like "popular committees" have local authority in villages, factories, and universities.

Who REALLY Rules--Colonel Qaddafi and the 22,000-man Army that backs him. No political parties are allowed. The national parliament remains dissolved. Local officials are appointed.

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