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Solomon Islands

Political Status: Former British-administered territory; achieved internal self-government on January 2, 1976, and full independence within the Commonwealth on July 7, 1978.

Area: 10, 639 sq. mi. (27, 556 sq. km.).

Population: 409, 042 (1999C); 550, 000 (2010E).

Major Urban Center (2005E): HONIARA (61, 000).

Official Language: English (Solomons Pidgin is the effective lingua franca).

Monetary Unit: Solomon Dollar (official rate November 1, 2010: 7.83 dollars = $1US).

Sovereign: Queen ELIZABETH II.

Governor General: Frank Ofagioro KABUI; elected by the National Parliament on June 15, 2009, and sworn in on July 7 for a five-year term, succeeding Sir Nathaniel WAENA.

Prime Minister: Danny PHILIP (Solomon Islands Reform and Democratic Party); elected by the National Parliament on August 25, 2010, succeeding Dr. Derek SIKUA (Coalition for National Unity and Rural Advancement).

The Country

The Solomons comprise ...

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