Country of the World Mozambique

About the country Mozambique, its location, size, population, leaders and rulers.




Lay of the Land: Mozambique lies on the southeast coast of Africa between Tanzania to the north and South Africa and Swaziland to the south. The Indian Ocean laps against its 1600-mi. coastline. Coastal lowlands rise to a high interior plateau.

Size: 302,330 sq. mi. (783,030 sq. km.), almost twice the size of California.

Population: 9.8 million.

Who Rules: The People's Assembly, consisting of representatives of the people, the armed forces, and leaders of the Marxist Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (FRELIMO)-the only legal political party-sets the ideological policy of the country. A Central Committee of 67 members and a nine-member permanent political committee make day-to-day decisions.

Who REALLY Rules: Samora Machel, the president of Mozambique, runs the country as if he were still head of a liberation army instead of a civilian president. Dissidents are sent to "reeducation camps," and only people who toe the Marxist line of FRELIMO are allowed to remain in the towns and cities. No opposition to the FRELIMO policy of "scientific socialism" is tolerated.

Under the new regime, Maputo, once the sin capital of southern Africa, is taking on a puritanical hue. Prostitutes, once plentiful, have nearly all vanished to the "reeducation camps."

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