Djibouti, officially known as the ‘Republic of Djibouti, is a country located in the ‘Horn of Africa and has for its neighbors Ethiopia in the west and south, Somalia in the southeast and Eritrea in the north. The Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea make up for the rest of the border of this country. Djibouti was formed in 1977, when the Afars and the Issas broke free from the rule of the French to form the country. Chaos in the form of a civil war plagued the country in the 1990s. The unrest was a result of the disparities between the Afar rebels and the Issa-dominated government. Fortunately, the conflict came to an end with the signing of a treaty between the two clashing communities in 2001. The country now functions under a semi-presidential republic and still maintains a strong bond with France. France also has a significant and intimidating military presence in Djibouti. Dive deeper into this article to know more on Djibouti.
Image: By U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Michael R. McCormick [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Interesting And Fun Facts About Djibouti
- Djibouti is located in Eastern Africa, between Somalia and Eritrea, bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea.
- Djibouti is just a little smaller than the state of Massachusetts.
- The history of the country dates back to the days of the barter system when the people inhabiting the region traded skins and hides for the perfumes and spices of ancient India, China and Egypt.
- The country experiences a very dry climate with prolonged spells of scorching heat. Djibouti also faces issues like scarcity of drinkable water and desertification.
- Djibouti enjoys proximity to few of the world’s busiest shipping lanes. Apart from the closeness to the lanes, the country is also close to the Arabian oilfields.
- Not only is Lac Assal (Lake Assal) the lowest point in Djibouti, it is also the lowest point in the continent of Africa.
- Djibouti is a semi-presidential republic
- Did you know that the Afar and Somali ethnic groups in Djibouti were amongst the first populations in Africa to embrace Islam as a religion?
- The only United States military base in sub-Saharan Africa is located in Djibouti. The country is an African pioneer in the fight against terrorism.
- Strangely, the capital city of Djibouti goes by the same name and is the largest city in the country. Nearly two-thirds of the country’s population lives in the capital, while the rest are mostly nomadic herders.
- Due to the curse of scanty rainfall in the country, agricultural production is limited only to fruits and vegetables. Most of the food in Djibouti is imported.
- The lack of natural resources and a nascent industry in Djibouti has made the country rely heavily on foreign assistance to help better its balance of payments.
- One of Djibouti’s biggest problems, apart from a huge long-term debt, is its rate of unemployment. The unemployment rate in Djibouti as present is at a high 50%.
- Djibouti is located within the limits of the Afar Triangle, one of hottest and most isolated places on the surface of the earth.
- Tourist attractions in the Djibouti city range from a lively and entertaining market, and myriad local restaurants. These restaurants dish out French, Chinese, Arab, Vietnamese, and other local specialties. The city has a distinct Arabian feel to it.