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 Demographics of Comoros

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kosovohp
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PostSubject: Demographics of Comoros   Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:56 am

With fewer than a million people, the Comoros is one of the least populous countries in the world, but is also one of the most densely populated, with an average of 275 inhabitants per square kilometre (710 /sq mi). In 2001, 34% of the population was considered urban, but that is expected to grow, since rural population growth is negative, while overall population growth is still relatively high.[46] Almost half of the population is younger than age 15.[47] Major urban centers include Moroni, Mutsamudu, Domoni, Fomboni, and Tsémbéhou. There are between 200,000 and 350,000 Comorians living in France.[48]

The islands of the Comoros share mostly African-Arab origins. Sunni Islam is the dominant religion, representing as much as 98% of the population. Although Arab culture is firmly established throughout the archipelago, a minority of the population of Mayotte, mostly immigrants from metropolitan France, are Roman Catholic.[49] Malagasy (Christian) and Indian (mostly Ismaili) minorities also exist, as well as minorities mostly descended from early French settlers. Chinese people are also present on Mayotte and parts of Grande Comore (especially Moroni). A small white minority of French with other European (i.e. Dutch, British and Portuguese) ancestry lives in Comoros. Most French left after independence in 1975.[citation needed]

The most common language is Comorian, or Shikomor, a Sabaki language related to Swahili, four different variants (Shingazidja, Shimwali, Shinzwani, and Shimaore) being spoken on each of the four islands. French and Arabic are also official languages, along with Comorian. Arabic is widely known as a second language, being the language of Quranic teaching, and French is the language of all other formal education. A Malagasy language, Shibushi, is spoken by approximately a third of the population of Maore.[50] About fifty-seven percent of the population is literate in the Latin alphabet while more than 90% are literate in the Arabic alphabet; total literacy is incorrectly estimated at 62.5%.[51] Comorian has no native script, but both Arabic and Latin scripts are used

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