Mozambique

Mozambique (/moʊzæmˈbiːk/), officially the Republic of Mozambique (Portuguese: Moçambique or República de Moçambique, pronounced [ʁɛˈpuβlikɐ ðɨ musɐ̃ˈbikɨ], Chichewa: Mozambiki, Swahili: Msumbiji, Tsonga: Muzambhiki), is a country located in Southeast Africa bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east, Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the northwest, Zimbabwe to the west, and Eswatini (Swaziland) and South Africa to the southwest. The sovereign state is separated from the Comoros, Mayotte and Madagascar by the Mozambique Channel to the east. The capital of Mozambique is Maputo (formerly known as "Lourenço Marques" from 1876 to 1976) while Matola is the largest city, being a suburb of Maputo.

Between the first and fifth centuries AD, Bantu-speaking peoples migrated to present-day Mozambique from farther north and west. Northern Mozambique lies within the monsoon trade winds of the Indian Ocean. Between the 7th and 11th centuries, a series of Swahili port towns developed here, which contributed to the development of a distinct Swahili culture and language. In the late medieval period, these towns were frequented by traders from Somalia, Ethiopia, Egypt, Arabia, Persia, and India.

The voyage of Vasco da Gama in 1498 marked the arrival of the Portuguese, who began a gradual process of colonisation and settlement in 1505. After over four centuries of Portuguese rule, Mozambique gained independence in 1975, becoming the People's Republic of Mozambique shortly thereafter. After only two years of independence, the country descended into an intense and protracted civil war lasting from 1977 to 1992. In 1994, Mozambique held its first multiparty elections, and has since remained a relatively stable presidential republic, although it still faces a low-intensity insurgency.

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