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The republic of paraguay has a long history of political strife. From 1865 to 1870, the country fought in the War of the Triple Alliance, which resulted in the loss of two-thirds of the male population. After decades of economic stagnation, the Chaco War of 1932–35 stripped Paraguay of important land areas previously acquired from Bolivia. At the end of the 20th century, Paraguay threw off 35 years of military dictatorship and held free elections.

With a per capita income of $4,900, Paraguay is ranked 137th in world incomes. Some 32 percent of the 6,347,884 population live below the poverty line. Unemployment is currently 16 percent, and there is a large informal sector that is engaged in the re-export business and various microenterprises such as street ...

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