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History & Politics of Indonesia
Indonesia, officially the Republic of Indonesia , is a nation of islands consisting of 18,110 islands in the South East Asian Archipelago. Indonesia (from Greek: indus = India nesos = islands) is the world's largest archipelagic nation. Its capital is Jakarta. Indonesia is bordered by the nations of Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Malaysia. With a population of over 200 million, it is the world's fourth most populous country and the most populous Muslim-majority nation.
The Indonesian Archipelago, home of the Spice Islands, has been an important trade destination since ancient times, when early Chinese sailors began to find profit in the spice trade. Much of Indonesia's history has been influenced by the many foreign powers that have been drawn to the archipelago and by its wealth of natural resources. These have included Classical Hindus and Buddhists from India, Muslim traders in medieval times, and Europeans during the Age of Exploration who fought for monopolization of the spice trade. Indonesia was colonized by the Dutch for over three centuries but declared its independence in 1945, which was internationally recognized four years later. Since then, Indonesia has had a turbulent history, including political instability and corruption, periods of rapid economic growth and decline, environmental catastrophe, and a recent democratization process.
Historical & Tourist Attractions in Indonesia
The biggest national park in Indonesia is the 9,500 square kilometre Gunung Leuser National Park in the north of Sumatra island. Together with Kerinci Seblat National Park and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, the total 25,000 square kilometres of national parks in Sumatra, named Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra, has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage list. Other national parks on the list are Lorentz National Park in Papua, Komodo National Park in the Lesser Sunda Islands and Ujung Kulon National Park in the west of Java.
With more than 17,000 islands, Indonesia presents ample diving opportunities.
Bunaken at the northern tip of Sulawesi, claims to have seven times more genera of coral than Hawaii,
and has more than 70% of all the known fish species of the Indo-Western Pacific.
Moreover, there are over 3,500 species living in Indonesian waters, including sharks, dolphins, manta rays,
turtles, morays, cuttlefish, octopus and scorpionfish, compared to 1,500 on the Great Barrier Reef and 600 in the Red Sea.
Tulamben Bay in Bali boasts the wreck of a 120 meter (400 foot) US Army commissioned transport vessel,
the U.S.A.T Liberty. Beside Bunaken and Bali, Lombok, with three Gilis (Gili Air, Gili Meno and Gili Trawangan),
Thousand Islands and Bangka are some of the most popular diving sites in Indonesia.