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Lithuania

Description

With a Baltic Sea coastline, Lithuania is neighbored by Latvia, Belarus, and Poland. Once part of the former Soviet Union, it has an exclave of Russia, namely Kaliningrad. This small part of Russia remains a conflict between the E.U. and Russia, being that Lithuania became a member in 2004. The terrain features numerous lakes, Lake Vištytis for example, and wetlands; a mixed forest zone covers 30% of the country. The climate lies between maritime and continental, with wet, moderate winters and summers. According to one geographical computation method, Lithuania\'s capital, Vilnius, lies only a few kilometers south of the geographical center of Europe.

Lithuania today is a Parliamentary Democracy with a semi-presidential system for its administration, located in its capital Vilnius. While the President is the Head of State, which has mostly a ceremonial function, the Prime Minister is the Head of Government who oversees the executive branch. Being a member of the European Union, Lithuania will become part of the Eurozone expectedly in 2009, giving up its Lita as the currency.

Lithuania offers some amazing historical sites, such as the Church of Paluse, which is the oldest wooden church in Lithuania. The Vilnius University is claimed to be one of the oldest universities in Northern Europe. The music that Lithuania offers has a long history of folk, popular and classical development. Lithuanian folk music is based primarily around polyphonic music played on flutes, zithers (kanklÄ—s) and other instruments. The national religion is Roman Catholic and the official language is Lithuanian.




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Quick Facts

Population: 3,525,761
Capital: Vilnius
Per-capita GDP: $ 19100
Size: 65,300 km2
Time Zone: (GMT + 02:00 hours) Kaliningrad

US State Department

Travel Warning: YES
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Country Specific Info.


Country information is adapted from public domain resources including the CIA World Fact Book and www.Wikipedia.org.
Please report errors or concerns to questions@abroadoffice.net.

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