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The Gambia Information - Page 2
History
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to establish trading stations along the Gambia river.

The British and the French vied for possession of the region for many years. The boundaries of Gambia were agreed between Britain and France in 1889, and Gambia became a British Protectorate in 1894.

Independence was achieved in 1965. Following a referendum (1970) The Gambia became a republic.

A military coup took place in 1994; civilian rule resumed within two years.

The Gambia is a member of the [British] Commonwealth.

Economy
Gambia's agricultural sector provides employment for a large percentage of the working population.

Agricultural products are rice, maize, millet, sorghum, cassava, peanuts, sesame and palm kernels. Livestock is reared.

Industries include agricultural machinery assembly, metalwork, woodwork, clothing, footwear, hides, fish, peanut processing and beverages.

Tourism and money remitted from Gambians working abroad are major sources of foreign exchange. (2008)

Arts
Music is an important part of Gambian culture. Griots, or praise-singers, have recorded local and family histories for generations. Griots are often accompanied by traditional instruments: the kora, a stringed instrument, and the balafon, similar to a xylophone.

The Gambia National Troupe is a government-funded musical and theatrical group which not only performs in The Gambia but travels to other African countries and countries in Europe.

Sport
Football is a popular team game played in The Gambia. Other team sports include basketball and cricket.

As a member of the Commonwealth, The Gambia takes part in the Commonwealth Games.

Holidays
All religious holidays are celebrated. Other holidays include Labor Day - 1 May and Independence Day - 18 February (1965).

News
News from The Gambia is available from Newslink.

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