Colombia

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Colombia (pronounced /kəˈlʌmbiə/ ( listen)), officially the Republic of Colombia (Spanish: República de Colombia, pronounced [reˈpuβlika ðe koˈlombja]  ( listen)), is a constitutional republic in northwestern South America. Colombia is bordered to the east by Venezuela[7] and Brazil;[8] to the south by Ecuador and Peru;[9] to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the northwest by Panama; and to the west by the Pacific Ocean. Colombia also shares maritime borders with Venezuela, Jamaica, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.[10][11] With a population of over 45 million people, Colombia has the 29th largest population in the world and the second largest in South America, after Brazil. Colombia has the fourth largest Spanish-speaking population in the world after Mexico, the United States, and Spain.[12]

The territory of what is now "Colombia" was originally inhabited by indigenous people including the Muisca, Quimbaya, and Tairona. The Spanish arrived in 1499 and initiated a period of conquest and colonization creating the Viceroyalty of New Granada (comprising modern-day Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, the northwest region of Brazil and Panama) with its capital in Bogotá.[13] Independence from Spain was won in 1819, but by 1830 "Gran Colombia" had collapsed with the secession of Venezuela and Ecuador. What is now Colombia and Panama emerged as the Republic of New Granada. The new nation experimented with federalism as the Granadine Confederation (1858), and then the United States of Colombia (1863), before the Republic of Colombia was finally declared in 1886.[2] Panama seceded in 1903 under pressure to fulfill financial responsibilities towards the United States government to build the Panama Canal.

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