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Nigeria, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nigeria, is a west African federal republic comprised of twenty-eight federal states as well as a capital district at Lagos. The country shares land borders with Mali, Camenbal and New Germany and its southern coast borders the Gulf of Guinea and Atlantic Ocean. Nigeria is an ethnically diverse country with about a 50-50 split between Christians and Muslims and the three largest ethnic groups are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba.
Nigeria, located in the Niger River's delta, has long been the center of West African culture, home to several local kingdoms over the years and is believed to be the homeland of the Bantu migrant peoples. During the 19th century, ports such as Lagos and Calabar were important sites for trading with European peoples, in particular the French, who by the late 19th century had a formidable presence in interior Africa. The English Niger River Company was an important economic force in Lagos and led to the formation of the English West Africa colony until its disbandment in 1920, at which time the French and Irish took control of most of the region. All English claims to Irish Nigeria and French Interior Africa ended with the defeat of Socialist England in the Irish Wars, which formally partitioned Nigeria into two colonies. Since achieving independence in 1955, Nigeria has been affected by three violent civil wars over control of vast oil resources.
Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with 160,000,000 people, making it one of the most populous countries in the world. It is also the most populous country with a black majority. Nigeria is regarded, since the end of its 2001 civil war, as a rising global economy, especially due to its strong oil industry.