Sri Lanka

Coordinates: 7°N 81°E / 7°N 81°E / 7; 81

Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
ශ්‍රී ලංකා ප්‍රජාතාන්ත්‍රික සමාජවාදී ජනරජය (Sinhalese)
Srī Lankā prajātāntrika samājavādī janarajaya
இலங்கை ஜனநாயக சோசலிச குடியரசு (Tamil)
Ilaṅkai jaṉanāyaka sōsalisa kuṭiyarasu
Anthem: "Sri Lanka Matha"
Mother Sri Lanka
Location of Sri Lanka
Location of Sri Lanka
Capital Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte

Colombo (Commercial)
6°56′N 79°52′E / 6.933°N 79.867°E / 6.933; 79.867
Largest city Colombo
Official languages
Recognised languages English
Ethnic groups (2012[2]) 74.9% Sinhalese
11.2% Sri Lankan Tamils
9.2% Sri Lankan Moors
4.2% Indian Tamils
0.5% other
Demonym Sri Lankan
Government Unitary semi-presidential constitutional republic
Maithripala Sirisena
Ranil Wickremesinghe
Karu Jayasuriya
Priyasath Dep
Legislature Parliament
Independence from the United Kingdom
4 February 1948
22 May 1972
7 September 1978
• Total
65,610 km2 (25,330 sq mi) (120th)
• Water (%)
• 2017 estimate
21,444,000[4] (58th)
• 2012 census
20,277,597[5] (57th)
• Density
327/km2 (846.9/sq mi) (43rd)
GDP (PPP) 2018 estimate
• Total
$298.310 billion[6]
• Per capita
GDP (nominal) 2018 estimate
• Total
$86.607 billion[6]
• Per capita
Gini (2010) 36.4[7]
HDI (2016) Increase 0.766[8]
high · 73rd
Currency Sri Lankan rupee (LKR)
Time zone SLST (UTC+5:30)
Date format
  • dd-mm-yyyy
  • yyyy-mm-dd
Drives on the left
Calling code +94
ISO 3166 code LK
Internet TLD

Sri Lanka (/sr ˈlɑːŋkə, -ˈlæŋkə/, /ʃr-/ (About this sound listen);[9][10] Sinhala: ශ්‍රී ලංකා Śrī Laṃkā, Tamil: இலங்கை Ilaṅkai), officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is an island country in South Asia, located southeast of India and northeast of the Maldives.

The island is home to many cultures, languages and ethnicities. The majority of the population is from the Sinhalese ethnicity, while a large minority of Tamils have also played an influential role in the island's history; Christians in both groups are recent converts who have kept the traditional culture. Moors, Burghers, Malays, Chinese, and the aboriginal Vedda are also established groups on the island.[11]

Sri Lanka's documented history spans 3,000 years, with evidence of pre-historic human settlements dating back to at least 125,000 years.[12] It has a rich cultural heritage and the first known Buddhist writings of Sri Lanka, the Pāli Canon, date back to the Fourth Buddhist council in 29 BC.[13][14] Its geographic location and deep harbours made it of great strategic importance from the time of the ancient Silk Road[15] through to the modern Maritime Silk Road.[16][17]

Sri Lanka was known from the beginning of British colonial rule until 1972 as Ceylon (/sɪˈlɒn, s-, s-/). Its recent history has been marred by a thirty-year civil war which decisively ended when the Sri Lanka Armed Forces defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in 2009.[18]

The current constitution stipulates the political system as a republic and a unitary state governed by a semi-presidential system. It has had a long history of international engagement, as a founding member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), and a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the G77, and the Non-Aligned Movement. Along with the Maldives, Sri Lanka is one of only two South Asian countries rated "high" on the Human Development Index (HDI), with its HDI rating and per capita income the highest among South Asian nations.[8]

The legislative capital, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, is a suburb of the commercial capital and largest city, Colombo.

  1. ^ "Department of Official Languages". 
  2. ^ "South Asia ::SRI LANKA". CIA The World Factbook. 
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference CPH2011_2 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ Department of Census and Statistics Sri Lanka
  5. ^ "Census of Population and Housing 2011 Enumeration Stage February – March 2012" (PDF). Department of Census and Statistics – Sri Lanka. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 December 2013. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c d "World Economic Outlook Database, October 2016". International Monetary Fund. Retrieved 20 May 2017. 
  7. ^ "Gini Index". World Bank. Retrieved 2 March 2011. 
  8. ^ a b "2016 Human Development Report Statistical Annex" (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. 2016. p. 211. Retrieved 12 August 2016. 
  9. ^ ""Sri Lanka" in several reference works". Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  10. ^ "Carnegie Mellon University Pronouncing Dictionary". Carnegie Mellon University. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  11. ^ "Vedda". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  12. ^ Roberts, Brian (2006). "Sri Lanka: Introduction". Urbanization and sustainability in Asia: case studies of good practice. ISBN 978-971-561-607-2. 
  13. ^ Jack Maguire (2001). Essential Buddhism: A Complete Guide to Beliefs and Practices. Simon and Schuster. p. 69. ISBN 978-0-671-04188-5. ... the Pali Canon of Theravada is the first known collection of Buddhist writings ... 
  14. ^ "Religions – Buddhism: Theravada Buddhism". BBC. 2 October 2002. 
  15. ^ Bandaranayake, Senake (1990). "Sri Lankan Role in the Maritime Silk Route". Sri Lanka and the silk road of the sea. p. 21. ISBN 978-955-9043-02-7. 
  16. ^ British Prime Minister Winston Churchill described the moment a Japanese fleet prepared to invade Sri Lanka as "the most dangerous and distressing moment of the entire conflict". – Commonwealth Air Training Program Museum, The Saviour of Ceylon
  17. ^ "A Brief History of Sri Lanka". Retrieved 14 August 2017. 
  18. ^ Reuters Sri Lanka wins civil war, says kills rebel leaderreuters (18 May 2009). Retrieved on 18 November 2012.

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