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Portal:Puerto Rico

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The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Spanish: Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico) is a archipelago located east of the Dominican Republic in the northeastern Caribbean. Puerto Rico, the smallest of the Greater Antilles, includes the main island of Puerto Rico and a number of smaller islands and keys, including the populated island-municipalities of Vieques and Culebra, as well as unpopulated Mona island, located halfway between the islands of Puerto Rico and Hispaniola.

The nature of Puerto Rico's political relationship with the United States is the subject of ongoing debate on and off the island. Those who support maintaining the current formula insist that upon attaining this status, Puerto Rico entered into a voluntary association with the U.S. "in the nature of a compact", but opponents of the Commonwealth status, disagree: according to them, Puerto Rico is no more than an unincorporated organized territory of the U.S., subject to the plenary powers of the United States Congress.

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The Taíno are pre-Columbian indigenous inhabitants of the Bahamas, Greater Antilles, and some of the Lesser Antilles. It is believed that the seafaring Taíno were relatives of the Arawakan people of South America. Their language is a member of the Arawakan language family, which ranges from South America across the Caribbean. The Taíno of the Bahamas were known as the Lucayan (the Bahamas being known then as the Lucayas), while those in Puerto Rico called themselves Boriquen.

At the time of Columbus's arrival in 1492, there were five Taíno kingdoms or territories on Hispaniola, each led by a principal Cacique (chieftain), to whom tribute was paid. At the time of the Spanish conquest, the largest Taíno population centers may have contained around 3,000 people or more. The Taíno were historical neighbors and enemies of the Carib, another group with origins in South America who lived principally in the Lesser Antilles. The relationship between the two groups has been the subject of much study. (more...)

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The Puerto Rican spindalis, known locally as Reina Mora, is the national bird of Puerto Rico. It forms an important part of the local ecosystem, because of its help in seed dispersal and plant reproduction.

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Did you know...

  • ...that Puerto Rico has been a territory of the United States since 1898?
  • ...that the Camuy River is the third-longest underwater river in the world?
  • ...that the reggaeton was invented in Puerto Rico and has since then spread to other places around the world?

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Captain Humbert Roque "Rocky" Versace (July 2, 1937–September 26, 1965) was a United States Army officer of Puerto Rican-Italian descent who was awarded the United States' highest military decoration — the Medal of Honor — for his heroic actions while a prisoner of war (POW) during the Vietnam War.

While acting as intelligence advisor to South Vietnamese fighters, their unit was ambushed by opposing forces, and Versace provided sufficient covering fire for his unit to evacuate. However, he was wounded and taken prisoner deep in the jungle along with two other Americans. He tried to escape a total of four times, all unsuccessful. Versace insulted the Viet Cong and cited the Geneva Convention treaty during the indoctrination sessions, and was last seen singing "God Bless America" as he was taken away for execution. He was the first member of the U.S. Army to be awarded the Medal of Honor for actions performed in Southeast Asia while in captivity. (more...)

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Politics Constitution | The Commonwealth | Governor | Puerto Rican citizenship | Resident Commissioner | Legislative Branch (Senate - House of Representatives) | Supreme Court | Political parties | Military | Independence movement
Geography Municipalities | Islands | Mona Island | Dry Forests | El Yunque National Forest | Rivers | Puerto Rico Trench
Economy Companies | Operation Bootstrap | Tourism | Puerto Rican peso (1895–98) | United States dollar (1898-present)
Society Puerto Ricans | Puerto Ricans in the United States | Demographics | Education | Holidays | Religion
Culture Art | Buildings and Structures | Casals Festival | Cinema | Cuisine | Literature | Music | Sports
Ecology Fauna of Puerto Rico | Herpeto fauna | Endemic fauna | Endemic flora | Puerto Rican birds | Vieques birds | Puerto Rican amazon | Golden coquí | Monito gecko | Puerto Rican crested anole | Mona ground iguana | Elfin woods warbler | Puerto Rican trees
Other Flag | Transportation | Rail transport | Slang | Communications | List of Puerto Ricans | List of fraternities and sororities in Puerto Rico | Scouting in Puerto Rico| Piragua

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