Republic of Indonesia abbreviated RI or Indonesia is a country in Southeast Asia, which is crossed by the equator and lies between Asia and Australia as well as between the Pacific and Indian Ocean. Indonesia is the world’s largest archipelagic country consisting of 17,508 islands, therefore it is also known as the Nusantara (Island of). With a population of 222 million people in 2006, Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world and the largest Muslim populated country in the world, although not officially an Islamic state. Indonesia is a republic, the House of Representatives, the Regional Representative Council and the President is elected directly. Is the country’s capital Jakarta. Indonesia borders with Malaysia on Borneo island, with Papua New Guinea on the island of Papua, and Timor Leste in the Timor Island. Other neighboring countries include Singapore, Philippines, Australia, and union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
History of Indonesia has been influenced by other nations. Indonesian archipelago became an important trade region since at least the 7th century, when the kingdom of Sriwijaya religion and trade relations with China and India. Kingdoms of the Hindus and Buddhists have been growing in the early centuries AD, followed by the traders who brought Islam, and various European powers fought one another to monopolize the spice trade in the Moluccas during the era of ocean exploration. Once under Dutch rule, Indonesia declared its independence at the end of World War II. Furthermore, Indonesia had a variety of obstacles, threats and challenges of natural disasters, corruption, separatism, a democratization process and the period of rapid economic change.
From Sabang to Merauke, Indonesia consists of many tribes, different languages and religions. The Javanese are the largest ethnic group and most politically dominant. Indonesia’s national motto, “Unity in Diversity” (“Diversity remains one”), articulates the diversity that shapes the country. Besides having a dense population and vast territory, Indonesia has a natural area that supports the level of biodiversity in the world’s second largest.