The Muslim-majority state of Pakistan was born out of the partition of the Indian sub-continent in 1947, and has faced both domestic political upheavals and regional confrontations.
Created to meet the demands of Indian Muslims for their own homeland, Pakistan was originally made up of two parts.
The east wing – present-day Bangladesh – is on the Bay of Bengal bordering India and Burma. The west wing – present-day Pakistan – stretches from the Himalayas down to the Arabian Sea.
The break-up of the two wings came in 1971 when the Bengali-speaking east wing seceded with help from India.
- Islamic Republic of Pakistan
- Capital : Islamabad
- Population 193 million
- Area 796,095 sq km (307,374 sq miles), excluding Kashmir
- Major languages English, Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashto, Balochi
- Major religion Islam
- Life expectancy 65 years (men), 67 years (women)
- Currency Pakistani Rupee