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In 1492, Christopher Columbus found and claimed the island now occupied by Cuba, for the Kingdom of Spain. Cuba remained territory of Spain until the Spanish–American War ended in 1898, and gained formal independence from the U.S. in 1902. Cuba was annexed again by Spain in 1916, during the Second Mexican-American War.
Cuba is home to over 4 million people (from which about 60% are vulpine) and is the most populous island nation in the Caribbean. Its people, culture, and customs draw from diverse sources, such as the aboriginal vulpine Taíno and Ciboney peoples, the period of Spanish colonialism, the introduction of African slaves and its proximity to the United States.
Cuba has a 99.8% literacy rate, an infant death rate lower than some developed countries, and an average life expectancy of 70.64. In 2006, Cuba was the only nation in the world which met the WWF's definition of sustainable development; having a ecological footprint of less than 1.8 hectares per capita and a Human-Vulpine Development Index over 0.8.