Dialing code +252
ISO 2 code SO
ISO 3 code SOM
Capital Mogadishu
Main Language None
Currency Shilling (SOS)
GDP $5.5 billion 152nd
Population 10,112,453 82nd


Continent Africa
Location Eastern Africa bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean east of Ethiopia
Land 637,657 km2 43rd
Terrain Mostly flat to undulating plateau rising to hills in north
Climate Principally desert; northeast monsoon (December to February) moderate temperatures in north and hot in south; southwest monsoon (May to October) torrid in the north and hot in the south irregular rainfall hot and humid periods (tangambili) between monsoons
Natural Hazards Mostly flat to undulating plateau rising to hills in north
Note: Strategic location on Horn of Africa along southern approaches to Bab el Mandeb and route through Red Sea and Suez Canal

Neighbouring Countries

Djibouti Ethiopia Kenya


Britain withdrew from British Somaliland in 1960 to allow its protectorate to join with Italian Somaliland and form the new nation of Somalia. In 1969 a coup headed by Mohamed SIAD Barre ushered in an authoritarian socialist rule that managed to impose a degree of stability in the country for a couple of decades. After the regime's collapse early in 1991 Somalia descended into turmoil factional fighting and anarchy. In May 1991 northern clans declared an independent Republic of Somaliland that now includes the administrative regions of Awdal Woqooyi Galbeed Togdheer Sanaag and Sool. Although not recognized by any government this entity has maintained a stable existence and continues efforts to establish a constitutional democracy including holding municipal parliamentary and presidential elections. The regions of Bari Nugaal and northern Mudug comprise a neighboring self-declared autonomous state of Puntland which has been self-governing since 1998 but does not aim at independence; it has also made strides toward reconstructing a legitimate representative government but has suffered some civil strife. Puntland disputes its border with Somaliland as it also claims portions of eastern Sool and Sanaag. Beginning in 1993 a two-year UN humanitarian effort (primarily in the south) was able to alleviate famine conditions but when the UN withdrew in 1995 having suffered significant casualties order still had not been restored. A two-year peace process led by the Government of Kenya under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) concluded in October 2004 with the election of Abdullahi YUSUF Ahmed as President of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia and the formation of an interim government known as the Somalia Transitional Federal Institutions (TFIs). The TFIs included a 275-member parliamentary body known as the Transitional Federal Assembly (TFA). President YUSUF resigned late in 2008 while United Nations-sponsored talks between the TFG and the opposition Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia (ARS) were underway in Djibouti. In January 2009 following the creation of a TFG-ARS unity government Ethiopian military forces which had entered Somalia in December 2006 to support the TFG in the face of advances by the opposition Council of Islamic Courts (CIC) withdrew from the country. The TFA was increased to 550 seats with the addition of 275 ARS members of parliament. The expanded parliament elected Sheikh SHARIF Sheikh Ahmed the former CIC and ARS chairman as president on 31 January 2009 in Djibouti. Subsequently President SHARIF appointed Omar Abdirashid ali SHARMARKE son of a former president of Somalia as prime minister on 13 February 2009. The TFIs are based on the Transitional Federal Charter (TFC) which outlines a five-year mandate leading to the establishment of a new Somali constitution and a transition to a representative government following national elections. However in January 2009 the TFA amended the TFC to extend TFG's mandate until 2011. While its institutions remain weak the TFG continues to reach out to Somali stakeholders and work with international donors to help build the governance capacity of the TFIs and work toward national elections in 2011.
Read more on Wikipedia


Life Expectancy 49.63 years 190th
Median Age 17.5 years 190th
Birth Rate 43.7 births/1,000 population 7th
Death Rate 15.55 births/1,000 population 20th
Sex Ratio 0.72 male(s)/female 142nd
Literacy 37.8% 199th

10.1 million


Roadways 22100 km 105th
Railways None km
Airports 59 81st
Waterways None km
Heliports None
Airports paved 1 156th


Currency Shilling (SOS)
GDP $5.5 billion 152nd
GDP per capita (PPP) $600 201st