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Republic of Rwanda

RWANDA

Independent Baptist Friends

Rwanda Kigali, Rwanda

Kigali

Country Rwanda
City Kigali
Latitude/Longitude -1.94, 30.06

Population 745,261

Bordering Cities

* Statistics by Wolfram|Alpha. "Christianity" is used in the statistical sense and includes Catholics, Protestants, and true Christians.

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Rwanda is a unitary republic of central and eastern Africa with a population of approximately 9,720,000. Rwanda is located a few degrees south of the Equator, and is bordered by Uganda to the north, Tanzania to the east, Burundi to the south, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west. The capital is Kigali, which is near the center of the country. Rwanda is landlocked but has many lakes. Mountains dominate the center and west, while the east consists of savanna, plains, and swamps. The climate is temperate due to the high elevation; there are two rainy seasons and two dry seasons every year. The population is young and predominantly rural, with a density amongst the highest in Africa. The largest cities are Kigali, Gitarama, and Butare. Rwandans form three groups: the Hutus, Tutsis and Twas. These groups share a common culture and language and are classified as social groups rather than tribes. Christianity is the largest religion in the country, and the principal language is Kinyarwanda, spoken by most Rwandans.

Rwanda's economy suffered heavily during the 1994 Genocide, but has since strengthened. The country has few natural resources, and the economy is based mostly on subsistence agriculture. Coffee and tea are the major cash crops for export. Tourism is a fast-growing sector and is now the country's leading foreign exchange earner, the most popular activity being the tracking of mountain gorillas. Music and dance are an integral part of Rwandan culture. Drums were of great importance in the King's court, and the most famous traditional dance is the highly-choreographed Intore. Traditional arts and crafts are produced throughout the country, including imigongo, a unique cow dung art.

Rwanda follows a presidential system of government. The President has broad powers, while the Parliament makes legislation and has limited oversight. The incumbent President is Paul Kagame of the RPF party. Kagame and the RPF receive electoral support from across the community, although human rights organisations allege suppression of the opposition. The country has low corruption levels relative to other Sub-Saharan African countries, and has experienced high economic and human development growth under the RPF government. Rwanda is a member of the United Nations, La Francophonie, the African Union, the East African Community and, since 2009, the Commonwealth of Nations. The government provides free education in state-run schools for nine years; however, many poorer children still fail to attend school. The quality of healthcare is generally low, but the government is attempting to prioritize this, having increased the health budget from 3.2% in 1996 to 9.7% in 2008.


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