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Flag : The Solomon Islands
 

 
Fact file : The Solomon Islands
 
Area27,556 sq km
CapitalHoniara
Population509,190
LanguageMelanesian pidgin, English (official), more than 80 indigenous languages
Currency1 Solomon Islands dollar (SI$), consisting of 100 cents

 

The Solomon Islands

IN the South Pacific Ocean, northeast of Australia, is a chain of islands called theSolomon Islands. They were given the name by a Spanish explorer of the sixteenth century who saw the islanders wearing gold ornaments, and thought he had reached the lands which had supplied gold to Solomon, the famous king of ancient Israel.

The southern islands of this chain are part of a country also called the Solomon Islands. The country was ruled by Great Britain from 1893 to 1978, when it gained its independence. The country has a population of about 320,000. Most Solomon Islanders are dark-skinned people called Melanesians. Most of them live in houses built on stilts.

The Solomon Islands exports fish products, copra, palm oil and timber — but no gold!

The capital of the country is Honiara.

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