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Flag of Mauritius.svg

Mauritius (/məˈrɪʃ(i)əs, mɔː-/ (About this sound listen); French: Maurice), officially the Republic of Mauritius (French: République de Maurice), is an island nation in the Indian Ocean about 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) off the southeast coast of the African continent. The country includes the islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues, 560 kilometres (350 mi) east of Mauritius, and the outer islands (Agaléga, St. Brandon and two disputed territories). The islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues form part of the Mascarene Islands, along with nearby Réunion, a French overseas department. The area of the country is 2,040 km2 (790 sq mi). The capital and largest city is Port Louis. It is a member of the Commonwealth, La Francophonie and the African Union.

Formerly a Dutch colony (1638–1710) and a French colony (1715–1810), Mauritius became a British colonial possession in 1810 and remained so until 1968, the year in which it attained independence. The British Crown colony of Mauritius once included the current territories of Mauritius, Rodrigues, the outer islands of Agaléga, St. Brandon, Chagos Archipelago, and Seychelles. The Mauritian territories gradually devolved with the creation of a separate colony of Seychelles in 1903 and the excision of the Chagos Archipelago in 1965. The sovereignty over the Chagos Archipelago is disputed between Mauritius and the United Kingdom (UK). The UK excised the archipelago from Mauritian territory in 1965, three years prior to Mauritian independence. The UK gradually depopulated the archipelago's local population and leased its biggest island, Diego Garcia, to the United States. Access to the archipelago is prohibited to casual tourists, the media, and its former inhabitants. Mauritius also claims sovereignty over Tromelin Island from France.

Selected article

Cyclone Gamede

Cyclone Gamede was among the wettest tropical cyclones on record, dropping more than 5.5 m (18 ft) of rain in a nine-day period on Réunion island in the southwest Indian Ocean. The seventh named storm of the 2006–07 South-West Indian Ocean cyclone season, Gamede formed on February 20 as a tropical depression to the south of Diego Garcia. It tracked generally westward and steadily intensified, passing northwest of Mauritius and Réunion as a broad but moderately intense tropical cyclone. For four days it remained within 400 km (250 mi) of Réunion before accelerating southward, and on March 3 Gamede transitioned into an extratropical cyclone to the south of Madagascar.

Gamede broke rainfall records set by Tropical Cyclone Hyacinthe 27 years earlier for the accumulated totals between three and nine days. The rainfall caused moderate damage in Réunion, and in the southern portion of the island a bridge collapsed due to the storm. Two people each were killed on Mauritius and Réunion. The name Gamede was submitted to the World Meteorological Organization by South Africa.

Selected picture

Mauricius Sunset.JPG
Credit: Damiano Luchetti
A sunset in Mauritius.

In the news

Wikinews Mauritius portal
  • September 7: UN holding recruitment exams in under-represented countries
  • July 2: United Nations passes Declaration on human cloning



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Selected biography

Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam KT, GCMG, KCMG, LRCP, MRCS (Hindi: सीवसगुर रंगूलम born on 18 September 1900 – 15 December 1985) was the first Chief Minister, Prime Minister and sixth Governor General of Mauritius.

He graduated from University College London and attended lectures at the London School of Economics. Ramgoolam was knighted in the Queen's Birthday Honours of 12 June 1965. Ramgoolam served as Chief Minister from 1961 to 1968, Prime Minister from 1968 until 1982 and lastly as Governor General from 1983 to 1985. He is known as the "Father of the Nation". Amidst much decolonisation, he led Mauritius to independence from the United Kingdom in 1968. He is perhaps the highest respected personality of Mauritius as he has various streets, public places such as a garden, a college, and the national airport, as well as his face on every Mauritian Rupee coin and on the highest note tender of Rs 2,000.

Did you know ...

Jacques-Désiré Laval

Selected panorama

Hairpin turn in Baie du Cap
Credit: Hansueli Krapf

Hairpin turn on B9 near Baie du Cap

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