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Tuesday 24th October
Bolivia Facts
Nevado Sajama is the highest point in the Republic of Bolivia (6,542 m).

The Pantanal, the world's largest freshwater wetland, extends through Bolivia, Paraguay and Brazil. Around ten percent of the Pantanal is in Bolivia.

Lake Titicaca, shared with Peru, is the highest navigable lake in the world and the largest lake in South America.

A large number of dinosaur footprints, dating back sixty-eight million years, can be seen in Cal Orck'o, near Sucre.

The ancient city of Tiwanaku, a World Heritage site near Lake Titicaca, may be older than generally estimated.

The Tiahuanaco (Tiwanaku) people lived around Lake Titicaca centuries before the arrival of the Incas.

The Incas conquered Bolivia in the fifteenth century.

Before the Spanish landed in the Americas, the Inca Empire stretched from Ecuador, through Peru and Bolivia, to northern Chile.

Herbal remedies, known in Bolivia since early times, include traditional medicines made with the leaf of the coca plant.

Fuerte de Samaipata, a World Heritage site, consists of pre-Hispanic residential and administrative areas overlooked by a hill covered with carvings. The sculptured rock is thought to have been a religious centre.

The Spanish conquered Bolivia in the first half of the sixteenth century.

Potosi developed into a mining town following the Spanish discovery of huge reserves of silver in "Cerro Rico", south of the hamlet. The silver from Cerro Rico provided Spain with great wealth.

In 1824 the Spanish were defeated by Antonio Jose de Sucre, a lieutenant of Simon de Bolivar (who won independence for Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela).

The Republic, established in August 1825, was named after Simon Bolivar who became the country's president.

In 1884 Bolivia lost Atacama to Chile. Atacama was Bolivia's only coastal area,

During the early twentieth century, Bolivia lost territory to Brazil (1903) and to Paraguay (1935).

The Chaco War (1932-1935) with Paraguay was an attempt by Bolivia to gain access to the Atlantic coast through the Rio de la Plata river system.

The Agrarian Reform Law of 1953 gave land to the indigenous population.

Ernesto "Che" Guevara, an Argentine doctor and revolutionary soldier, was killed in Bolivia in 1967.

At the beginning of 2001 a natural disaster was declared in Bolivia after two weeks of heavy rain.

At the beginning of the twenty-first century Bolivians showed great concern over how little the country has benefited from its huge supplies of natural gas - the second largest reserve in South America.

In December 2005 Evo Morales, the socialist leader, won the presidential election. Evo Morales is the first indigenous Bolivian to become president.

Evo Morales ordered the re-nationalization of the Bolivia's oil and gas assets in May 2006.

The government declared a state of emergency in January 2007 after months of heavy rain left dozens of people dead and thousands homeless.

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