Country of the World Singapore

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

NATIONS AND THEIR RULER

SINGAPORE

NITTY-GRITTY

Lay of the Land: Singapore is an island, roughly 26 mi. by 14 mi., situated at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula in Southeast Asia. The republic, which includes about 40 adjacent islets, sits near the eastern end of the Strait of Malacca. A mile-long causeway joins Singapore with the Malayan mainland.

Most of the island, which receives nearly 100 in. of annual rainfall, originally consisted of low-lying swamp and jungle. To increase its usable area, the government has an ongoing reclamation program, which has added at least 5% more land to the main island.

Size: 225 sq.mi. (582 sq. km.).

Population: 2.3 million.

Who Rules: Singapore operates a parliamentary government. Since independence it has been governed by the People's Action party of Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.

Who REALLY Rules: In the December, 1976 general election, the PAP won all 69 legislative seats with nearly three quarters of the contested vote.

Because Singapore is small, and access is limited, the Lee Kuan Yew government is able to rule with a firm hand. In the past few years the government has arrested student leaders, journalists, and other intellectuals for political crimes, forcing many to "confess" on television. In addition many left-wing leaders have been held since 1963.

Singapore's compact police state has greatly reduced crime. According to the government, the flogging of convicted criminals is a major reason.

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