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Botswana, one of Africa’s most stable countries, is the continent’s longest continuous multi-party democracy. It is relatively free of corruption and has a good human rights record.

Sparsely populated, Botswana protects some of Africa’s largest areas of wilderness. Safari-based tourism – tightly-controlled and often upmarket – is an important source of income.

Botswana is the world’s largest producer of diamonds and the trade has transformed it into a middle-income nation.

The country has had its share of problems: It once had the world’s highest rate of HIV-Aids infection. The country has one of Africa’s most-advanced treatment programmes, however, and medicine for the virus is readily available.

  • Capital: Gaborone
  • Area: 581,730 sq km
  • Population: 2.3 million
  • Languages: English, Setswana
  • Life expectancy: 66 years (men) 72 years (women)
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