Republic of Ireland
Political Status: Independent state since 1921; under republican constitution effective December 29, 1937.
Area: 27,136 sq. mi. (70,283 sq. km.).
Population: 4,239,848 (2006C).[Page 622]
Major Urban Centers (2006C): DUBLIN (506,211), Cork (119,418), Galway (72,414), Limerick (52,539).
Official Languages: Irish (Gaelic), English.
Monetary Unit: Euro (market rate November 2, 2007: 1 euro = $1.45US).
President (Uachtarán na hÉireann): Mary Patricia McALEESE (Fianna Fáil); elected on October 30, 1997, and inaugurated for a seven-year term on November 11, succeeding Mary ROBINSON (nonparty); reelected without opposition on October 1, 2004, and sworn in for a second seven-year term on November 11.
Prime Minister (Taoiseach): Bartholomew (Bertie) Patrick AHERN (Fianna Fáil); nominated by the president, confirmed by the Dáil, and sworn in for a five-year term on June 26, 1997, following the election of ...