geographical name \ˈnī-jər, nē-ˈzher\

Definition of NIGER

river 2600 miles (4184 kilometers) W Africa flowing from Fouta Djallon NE, SE, & S into Gulf of Guinea
country W Africa; a republic, until 1958 a territory of French West Africa Niamey area 459,073 square miles (1,188,999 square kilometers), pop 15,000,000
Ni·ger·ien \ˌnī-ˌjir-ē-ˈen, nē-ˈzher-ē-ən\ adjective or noun
Ni·ger·ois \ˌnē-zhər-ˈwä, -zher-\ noun


geographical name    (Concise Encyclopedia)

/div>Country, western Africa, on the southern edge of the Sahara. Area: 459,286 sq mi (1,189,546 sq km). Population: (2009 est.) 15,306,000. Capital: Niamey. More than half the people are Hausa; there are also Songhai-Zerma and Kanuri. Languages: French (official), Hausa, Arabic. Religions: Islam (predominantly Sunni); also traditional beliefs. Currency: CFA franc. A landlocked country, Niger is characterized by savanna in the south and desert in the centre and north; most of the population lives in the south. The Niger River dominates in the southwest and the Aïr Massif (a mountainous region) in the north-central part of the country. Niger has a developing economy based largely on agriculture and mining. Under the constitution it is a multiparty republic with one legislative body, with the president as its head of state and government, but the constitution was suspended after a coup in 2010, and a military junta assumed rule of the country. There is evidence of Neolithic culture in the region, and there were several precolonial kingdoms. First explored by Europeans in the late 18th century, it became part of French West Africa in 1904. It became an overseas territory of France in 1946 and gained independence in 1960. The first multiparty elections were held in 1993. Ibrahim Baré Maïnassara led a military coup in 1996, but after his assassination in 1999 the country returned to democratic government.

Variants of NIGER

Niger officially Republic of Niger


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