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|Republic of Indonesia
|Motto: Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (Old Javanese)
Unity in Diversity
National ideology: Pancasila:117
and largest city
|Ethnic groups (2000)||Javanese 40.6%
or unspecified 29.9%
|Government||Unitary presidential constitutional republic|
|-||Vice President||Jusuf Kalla|
|Legislature||People's Consultative Assembly|
|-||Upper house||Regional Representative Council|
|-||Lower house||People's Representative Council|
|Independence from the Netherlands|
|-||Declared||17 August 1945|
|-||Acknowledged||27 December 1949|
|-||Land||1,919,440 km2 (15th)
735,355 sq mi
|-||2011 estimate||237,424,363 (4th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2011 estimate|
|-||Total||$1.126 trillion (15th)|
|-||Per capita||$4,744 (122nd)|
|GDP (nominal)||2011 estimate|
|-||Total||$834.331 billion (17th)|
|-||Per capita||$3,514 (107th)|
|HDI (2011)|| 0.617
medium · 124th
|Time zone||various (UTC+7 to +9)|
|Drives on the||left|
Indonesia is a country in Southeast Asia. It is part of the Malay Archipelago. It has 18,108 islands. 6,000 of these islands are inhabited. The most important islands of Indonesia are Java, Bali, Borneo, Sulawesi, and Sumatra. The capital of Indonesia is Jakarta, on Java. The current president is Joko Widodo. Modern Indonesia began on the 17th of August 1945. At 10 o'clock on that Friday morning, Ir. Soekarno read Indonesia's Declaration of Independence. Indonesia's Independence Day is a national holiday.
Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world with a population of 238,452,952 (2004 est.) A Half of the population lives in Java, There are 111 inhabitants per km² and the population of man and women is equal. The official language of Indonesia is Bahasa Indonesia, but a total of 737 languages are spoken throughout Indonesia mostly confined to remote tribal groups. Other languages widely spoken in Indonesia include Javanese, Balinese and Sundanese. The closest countries are Papua New Guinea, Malaysia, and East Timor which share land borders with Indonesia. Other neighbouring countries are Australia to the south, Singapore to the Northwest, and Philippines to the Northeast.
The religion that most people in Indonesia follow is Islam, although formally not an Islamic country. Indonesia has the largest Muslim population on earth. Other religions include Christianity (Protestant, and Roman Catholic), Hinduism, and Buddhism.
Pre World War II
Indonesia has written history as far back as the 7th century. Before the colonial Dutch came in the 1596, Indonesia was made up of many kingdoms in constant warfare. Indonesia was ruled by the Netherlands from the 17th century until World War II.
During World War II, the Japanese drove out the Dutch and took control of Indonesia. After Japan surrendered in the war, Indonesia claimed its independence on the 17th of August 1945. The proclamation was read by Ir. Soekarno in Jakarta. Soekarno later became Indonesia's first President.
British troops came into Indonesia to restore peace and to rescue Europeans who had been prisoners of the Japanese. The British troops also had the job of shipping home 300,000 Japanese troops. The Indonesian Republicans fought the British troops, because it was expected that the British would give Indonesia back to the Dutch. The Indonesian Republicans killed many of the Japanese prisoners, before they could be sent home. They also began killing people from minority groups who might be against the new Republic. Many European and Indonesian European people were killed. Many Chinese business people and other minority groups were killed or made homeless. In Java there were many thousands of homeless people.
In 1946, the Dutch came back. When the British left in 1947, there were 55,000 Dutch soldiers in Indonesia. The Dutch action was called "Operatie Product" or "Politionele Acties". The Indonesian Republicans fought the Dutch until 1949. But the Indonesian Republicans were badly organised and often fought among themselves. As the Dutch forced the Republican soldiers out of different areas, they moved in more troops until there was 100,000 Dutch troops. The Dutch refused to obey the United Nations who said they should stop the fighting in Indonesia. The United States of America organised for meetings between Dutch and Indonesian leaders. The Dutch finally agreed to recognise Indonesia's independence in November 1949.
Because of the fighting and the bad organisation, it took a long time for the country to become peaceful, and for the economy to get better. Many Indonesian soldiers had died, between 45,000 and 100,000. Also, a very large number of civilian (people not in the army), Indonesians, Europeans and Chinese, had died; perhaps as many as 200,000.
Administratively, Indonesia has 34 provinces, five of which have special status. Each province has its own political legislature and governor. The provinces are divided into regencies (kabupaten) and cities (kota). These are further divided into districts (kecamatan), and again into village groupings (either desa or kelurahan).
Indonesian provinces and their capitals – listed by region
(Indonesian name in parentheses if different from English)
* are provinces with Special Status
People and culture
- Indonesia (Country Studies ed.). US Library of Congress. http://countrystudies.us/indonesia/86.htm.
- Vickers, Adrian (2005). A History of Modern Indonesia. Cambridge University Press. .
- "Indonesia". International Monetary Fund. http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2011/01/weodata/weorept.aspx?sy=2008&ey=2011&scsm=1&ssd=1&sort=country&ds=.&br=1&c=536&s=NGDPD%2CNGDPDPC%2CPPPGDP%2CPPPPC%2CLP&grp=0&a=&pr.x=63&pr.y=4. Retrieved 26 October 2011.
- "Human Development Report 2011". 2011. http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/countries/profiles/IDN.html. Retrieved 2 November 2011.