Namibia, a large and sparsely populated country on Africa’s south-west coast, has enjoyed stability since gaining independence in 1990 after a long struggle against rule by South Africa.
Germany took control of the area which it called South West Africa in the late 1800s.
The discovery of diamonds in 1908 prompted an influx of Europeans.
South Africa seized it during the First World War and administered it under a League of Nations mandate.
Namibians achieved independence in 1990 after a bush war of almost 25 years. Inter-racial reconciliation encouraged the country’s white people to remain and they still play a major role in farming and other economic sectors.
- Republic of Namibia
- Capital: Windhoek
- Population 2.4 million
- Area 824,292 sq km (318,261 sq miles)
- Major languages English (official), Afrikaans, German, Oshivambo, Herero, Nama
- Major religion Christianity
- Life expectancy 62 years (men), 63 years (women)
- Currency Namibian dollar