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Learn more about Sri Lanka.
Flag of Sri Lanka Sri Lanka
Population: 19,905,165 (July 2004 est.)
Capital: Colombo
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An Introduction to Sri Lanka
The Sinhalese arrived in Sri Lanka late in the 6th century B.C., probably from northern India. Buddhism was introduced beginning in about the mid-third century B.C., and a great civilization developed at the cities of Anuradhapura (kingdom from circa 200 B.C. to circa 1000 A.D.) and Polonnaruwa (from about 1070 to 1200). In the 14th century, a south Indian dynasty seized power in the north and established a Tamil kingdom. Occupied by the Portuguese in the 16th century and by the Dutch in the 17th century, the island was ceded to the British in 1796, became a crown colony in 1802, and was united under British rule by 1815. As Ceylon, it became independent in 1948; its name was changed to Sri Lanka in 1972. Tensions between the Sinhalese majority and Tamil separatists erupted in violence in the mid-1980s. Tens of thousands have died in an ethnic war that continues to fester. After two decades of fighting, the government and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam began a ceasefire in December 2001, with Norway brokering peace negotiations.

Sri Lanka map

Map of Sri Lanka ( Location ) : 7 00 N, 81 00 E, Southern Asia, island in the Indian Ocean, south of India. For additional reports and educational information specific to Sri Lanka, refer to the Country Info menubar to the upper right.

About the Flag The Sri Lankan Flag
Yellow with two panels; the smaller hoist-side panel has two equal vertical bands of green (hoist side) and orange; the other panel is a large dark red rectangle with a yellow lion holding a sword, and there is a yellow bo leaf in each corner; the yellow field appears as a border around the entire flag and extends between the two panels.

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23. Congo
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25. South Korea
26. South Africa
27. Burma
28. Colombia
29. Spain
30. Poland

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Country References
Country profile data for Sri Lanka

  • Economy Intro
  • Economy
  • Flag Description
  • Government
  • History
  • People
  • Political
  • US Relations
  • Foreign Relations
  • Religious Freedom
 

Tabular Data
  • Economy
  • Communications
  • Geography
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  • Health
  • Military
  • People
  • Transportation
  • Chiefs of State
 
Additional Resources
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Facts
Some interesting facts and figures about Sri Lanka.

Pop Growth Rate / Year:
    • 0.81%

Avg. Life Expectancy:
    • 70.34 yrs - Male
    • 75.57 yrs - Female

Phone Lines:
    • 881,400 (2002)

Televisions:
    • 1.53 million (1997)

Radios:
    • 38,500,000 (1997)

Internet Code:
    • .lk

Did you know ... People from Sri Lanka are called Sri Lankans
 

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Data Source: Central Intelligence Agency 2004 World Factbook