Algeria facts for kids

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People's Democratic Republic of Algeria

الجمهورية الجزائرية الديمقراطية الشعبية  (Arabic)
"al-Jumhūriyya al-Jazāʾiriyya ad-Dīmuqrāṭiyya ash-Shaʿbiyya"
Motto:  بالشّعب وللشّعب  (Arabic)
"By the people and for the people"
Anthem: "Kassaman"
"We Pledge"
Location of Algeria
and largest city
Official languages Arabic
National languages Berber
Demonym(s) Algerian
Government Semi-presidential republic
Abdelaziz Bouteflika
Abdelmalek Sellal
from 202 BC
from 46 BC
from 430
• Rustamid dynasty
from 767
• Zirid dynasty
from 973
• Hammadid dynasty
from 1014
• Abdalwadid dynasty
from 1235
from 1516
• French rule
from 1830
• Independence from France
3 July 1962 (recognized by France)
• Independence from France
5 July 1962 (declared by Algeria)
• Total
2,381,741 km2 (919,595 sq mi) (10th)
• Water (%)
• 2010 estimate
• 1998 census
• Density
14.6/km2 (37.8/sq mi) (204th)
GDP (PPP) 2010 estimate
• Total
$251.705 billion
• Per capita
GDP (nominal) 2010 estimate
• Total
$157.759 billion
• Per capita
Gini (1995) 35.3
HDI (2011) Increase 0.698
medium · 96th
Currency Algerian dinar (DZD)
Time zone CET (UTC+01)
Driving side right
Calling code 213
ISO 3166 code DZ
Internet TLD .dz, الجزائر.
Modern Standard Arabic is the official language.
Tamazight is spoken by one third of the population and has been recognized as a "national language" by the constitutional amendment since 8 May 2002. Algerian Arabic (or Darja) is the language used by the majority of the population. Although French has no official status, Algeria is the second Francophone country in the world in terms of speakers and French is still widely used in the government, the culture, the media (newspapers) and the education system (since primary school), due to Algeria's colonial history and can be regarded as the de facto co-official language of Algeria. The Kabyle language, the most-spoken Berber language in the country, is taught and is partially co-official (with a few restrictions) in parts of Kabylia.
Algeria on a world map

Algeria (official name: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria) is a country in the Western part of North Africa. The capital city is Algiers. It is the largest country in Africa. The name is from the city of Algiers. It is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea in the north, Tunisia in the northeast, Libya in the east, Niger in the southeast, Mauritania and Mali in the southwest, Western Sahara in the west and Morocco in the northwest.


Algeria has had people since 10.000 BC. This can be seen in Tassili National Park. By 600-BC, Phoenician were at Tipasa. The first Muslim Arabs came to Algeria in the mid-7th century. Many people chose this religion.

In the 11th century the Arab tribes of Banu Hilal and Banu Sulaym were installed between Tunisia and eastern Algeria (Constantois). The famous mathematician, Fibonacci (1170—1250) lived in Algeria as a teenager. This is where he learned the Hindu-Arabic number system and realized it was simpler to use. In the 1500s and 1700s the Spanish Empire ruled a lot of Algeria. Algeria was made part of the Ottoman Empire in 1517. Pirates worked from the Barbary Coast. They took people to sell as slaves.

France ruled Algeria starting in 1830. In 1954, the National Liberation Front (Front de Libération Nationale or FLN) wanted freedom from France. They fought a war. It became independent from France in July 5, 1962. In 1963 Ahmed Ben Bella became the first President of Algeria.

The Algerian Civil War started in 1991. It ended in 2002. After many people protested, like in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya, the government stopped the state of emergency on 24 February 2011.


A large part of southern Algeria is the Sahara Desert. The Aures and Nememcha mountain ranges are in the north. The highest point is Mount Tahat (3,003 m).


Official languages are Arabic and Berber. French is widely spoken too.


Algeria's population is about 39.5 million people. There are over 40 cities with more than 100,000 people.


There are 48 provinces (since 1983) in Algeria, they are:

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

There are several UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Algeria including Al Qal'a of Beni Hammad, the first capital of the Hammadid empire; Tipasa, a Phoenician and later Roman town; and Djémila and Timgad, both Roman ruins; M'Zab Valley, a limestone valley containing a large urbanized oasis; also the Casbah of Algiers is an important citadel. The only natural World Heritage Sites is the Tassili n'Ajjer, a mountain range.

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