Algeria - Algerie - Al-Dschasa´ir - al-Ğazā’ir

A republic in Northern Africa. Algeria was a territory of the Ottoman Turkish Empire from 1518-1830 and during this period was one of the centers of the Barbary pirates. France seized the coastal region in 1830 and during the 19th century expanded its rule inland. After World War II, Algerian nationalism increased, and French efforts to retain control resulted in a bitter civil war. In 1958, Algeria became an integral part of France, and French stamps replaced those of the colony. This effort to maintain the territory's association with France failed, and in 1962 Algeria became independent and resumed issuing its own stamps. Since independence, Algeria has been ruled by socialist and military governments. The first democratic elections in 1991 produced a victory for Islamic fundamentalists, and the military acted to nullify the electoral results. This provoked a bloody terrorist campaign by the fundamentalists, which continues and has claimed tens of thousands of civilian lives.

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Die Welt der Bienen auf Briefmarken
The world of bees on stamps

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