Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
al-Jamahiriyah al-Arabiyah al-Libiyah al-Shabiyah al-Ishtirakiyah al-Uzma
Political Status: Independent state since December 24, 1951; revolutionary republic declared September 1, 1969; name changed from Libyan Arab Republic to Libyan Arab People's Republic in 1976; present name adopted March 2, 1977.
Area: 679,358 sq. mi. (1,759,540 sq. km.).
Population: 5,678,484 (2003C, provisional); 6,227,000 (2007E). Both figures include nonnationals.
Major Urban Centers (2003C): TARABULUS (TRIPOLI, 1,197,000), Banghazi (Benghazi, 680,000), Misratah (Misurata, 351,000), Surt (Sirte, 162,000). (Many secretariats have reportedly been relocated recently to Sirte—about 400 miles east of Tarabulus—and other cities.)
Official Language: Arabic.
Monetary Unit: Dinar (official rate November 1, 2008: 1.29 dinar = $1US).
Revolutionary Leader (De Facto Head of State): Col. Muammar Abu Minyar al-QADHAFI (Col. Moammar GADDAFY); assumed power as Chair of Revolutionary Command Council (RCC) ...