Junetwentyseventh

Mary
filed under: , History, around-the-world
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Okay, it doesn't have the same ring as "Juneteenth," but today is also a little-known holiday commemorating the freedom of black people historically oppressed by white people, the independence day of my very favorite former French colony, liberated in 1977: Djibouti. How can you not love a country with a name that evokes Lil Jon? Alas, all most people know about Djibouti is its amusing moniker. Let's remedy that:

* Djibouti's motto is "Djibouti by Choice." 

* Djibouti's capital is called... Djibouti.

* Djibouti used to be called something far less fanciful: "The French Territory of the Afars and the Issas."

* If you're looking to get a tan, Djibouti's the place: Mostly desert, it's one of the hottest countries on earth. Average annual temp is in the 90s.

* Like America, Djibouti has a presidential dynasty: Its second president, Ismail Omar Guelleh was first elected to office in 1999, taking over from his uncle, Hassan Gouled Aptidon.

* Also like America, the president's actual election has been called "ridiculous, rigged, and rubbish:" In his second campaign last year, Guelleh was the only candidate on the ballot.

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June 27, 2006 - 3:44am
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