The Muslim-majority state of Pakistan was born out of the partition of the Indian sub-continent in 1947, and has faced both domestic political upheavals and regional confrontations. A key conflict in
India is the largest democracy in the world and according to UN estimates, it is expected to overtake China in 2028 as the most populous country in the world. As a rising economic powerhouse and nucle
Southeast Asia is a sub-region of Asia, consisting of the countries south of China and east of India, West of New Guinea, and North of Australia.
South Korea is situated in the southern part of the Korean Peninsula, with close ties to the U.S. and one of the strongest economies in the world.
North Korea is situated in the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. It is one of the most isolated states in the world, due to its nuclear weapons program and human rights record.
Sri Lanka lies 20 miles off the south eastern tip of India, near the centre of the Indian Ocean. It has important ties with both China and India due to its location in the Indian Ocean.
Japan one of the most developed countries in the world, playing a key role in many Asian and global affairs. It has the second largest economy in Asia.
China has the second largest economy in the world, and is a dominant superpower both in international politics and in Asia. Key issues include: the Chinese economy, the South China Sea dispute, and U.
The Nigerian government faces the growing challenge of preventing the most populous country in Africa from breaking apart along ethnic and religious lines. The country is rich in oil deposits, yet sec
Mexico has the second-largest economy in Latin America, and is a major oil producer and exporter. It borders the United States in the north, and Guatemala and Belize in the south.
Venezuela has some of the largest proven oil deposits in the world, and has benefited from the historically high international oil prices. However, its vulnerability is that its economic fortunes are
Brazil is the largest country in South America, with the majority of the Amazon rainforest in its territory. It has one of the largest economies in the world, which has allowed it to pursue greater in
Cuba has faced a U.S. economic embargo for 55 years. Since the collapse of the USSR and Soviet aid, it as made some tentative moves towards economic liberalisation.
Argentina stretches from its sub-tropical north to the sub-Antarctic south. After its deep economic recession in 2001, the country has faced great internal challenges such as poverty and debt restruct
Ukraine gained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and has since veered between seeking closer integration with Western Europe and being drawn into the orbit of Russia, which s
France is a key player on the global stage, with a seat on the UN Security Council, and a country at the political heart of Europe.
The United Kingdom (UK) has a long history as a major player in international affairs and fulfils an important role in the EU, UN and Nato. At the beginning of the 20th century, it commanded a world-w
Germany is the most industrialised and populous country in Europe. Germany rebounded from shattering defeats in World War I and II, and from being divided by the European cold war blocs, to become the
The European Union (EU) is a unique economic and political partnership between 28 European countries that cover much of the continent. Together, EU states form the largest economy in the world.
Egypt is the largest Arab country and has played a central role in Middle Eastern politics in modern times. In January 2011, Egypt erupted in large-scale anti-regime demonstrations, resulting in the r
Bridging the continents of Europe and Asia, Turkey has a strategically important location that has given it major influence in the region - and control over the entrance to the Black Sea. The country
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is one of the main players in the Arab world. Its stature is built on its geographical size (twice that of France and Germany combined), its prestige as the custodian of th
In September 2014, the agreement in Yemen brokered by the GCC following the Arab Spring events of 2011 fell through. The country spiralled into civil war in 2014 and, despite peace initiatives, fighti
A densely-populated country on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, Israel is the only state in the world with a majority Jewish population. It has been locked in conflict with the Palestinian
Libya, a mostly desert and oil-rich country, has more recently been known for the 42-year rule of the mercurial Col Muammar Gaddafi - and the chaos that followed his ousting by NATO forces in 2011. Th
Iran became an Islamic republic after the 1979 revolution, when the monarchy was overthrown and clerics assumed political control under supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini. Since 2004, Iran has undergon
Syria is a boiling pot. Since the Arab Spring, the country has been torn by state forces, rebels, terrorism and bombing coalitions by superpowers and neighbouring countries.
Since the American invasion of Iraq in 2003, the country has remained in a vegetative status. The seed of democracy is present, but without foreign military and aids it is a question how long it will
Canada is the second largest country in the world after Russia. However, its population is only about one-fifth of the population of Russia. Nearly 90% of Canadians live within 200km of the border wit
The United States of America (USA) is the worlds foremost economic and military power, with global interests and an unmatched global reach. Americas gross domestic product accounts for close to a quar
Russia - the largest country on earth in terms of surface area - emerged from a decade of post-Soviet economic and political turmoil to reassert itself as a world power. Income from vast natural resou