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Section 3: Nations

KEY POIN1'S IN RECENI' HISlORY 1954 War for independence from France begins, led by the Front de Liberation Nationale (FLN) 1962 Independence day (July 3) 1963 Muhammad Ben Bella (an FLN leader) becomes president 1965 Military coup overthrows government 1991 Fundamentalist Front d'lslamic Salvation (FIS) wins

ntENAnON Location: North Africa, facing the Mediterranean Sea Neighbors: Tunisia, Libya, Niger, Mali, Mauritania, Western Sahara, Morocco Official name: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria Divisions: Forty-eight provinces Capital: Algiers largest cities: Algiers, Oran, Constantine, Annaba, Blida, Setif, Sidi-bei-Abbes (in order of size) Flag: The Algerian flag is green and white with a red star and crescent. Green is a traditional Islamic color and the red star and crescent, symbols of Islam, also appear on the country's green-and-white coat of arms National anthem: "We swear by the lightning that destroys"

GEOGRAPHY With an area of 919,355 square miles (2,381, 120 sq. km), Algeria is Africa's second largest country. It is nearly three times bigger than Texas in the United States (US).