Monday, January 28, 2013

Algeria .. 2

When Muslim Arabs arrived in Algeria in the mid-7th century, a large number of locals converted to the new faith. After the fall of the Umayyad Arab Dynasty in 751, numerous local Berber dynasties emerged. Amongst those dynasties were the Aghlabids, Almohads, Abdalwadid, Zirids, Rustamids, Hammadids, Almoravids and the Fatimids. The Berber people controlled much of the Maghreb region throughout the Middle Ages. The Berbers were made up of several tribes. The two main branches were the Botr and Barnès tribes, who were themselves divided into tribes, and again into sub-tribes. Each region of the Maghreb contained several tribes. All these tribes were independent and made territorial decisions.
In the early 16th century, Spain constructed fortified outposts on or near the Algerian coast. Spain took control of Mers el Kebir in 1505, Oran in 1509, and Tlemcen, Mostaganem, and Ténès, in 1510. In the same year, the merchants of Algiers handed over one of the rocky islets in their harbor, where the Spaniards built a fort. The presidios in North Africa turned out to be a costly and largely ineffective military endeavor that did not guarantee access for Spain's merchant fleet.
In 1516 the Muslim privateer brothers Aruj and Hayreddin Barbarossa, who operated successfully under the Hafsids, moved their base of operations to Algiers. When Aruj was killed in 1518 during his invasion of Tlemcen, Hayreddin succeeded him as military commander of Algiers. The Ottoman sultan gave him the title of beylerbey and a contingent of some 2,000 janissaries. With the aid of this force, Hayreddin subdued the coastal region between Constantine and Oran (although the city of Oran remained in Spanish hands until 1791).

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Algeria .. 1

Algeria, officially the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria, also formally referred to as the Democratic and Popular Algerian Republic, is a country in the Maghreb region of Africa. Its capital and most populous city is Algiers. The territory of today's Algeria was the home of many ancient cultures, including Aterian and Capsian cultures. Its area have been ruled by many empires and dynasties, including ancient Numidians, Carthaginians, Romans, Vandals, Byzantines, Arab Umayyads and Fatimids, and Berber Almohads and later Turkish Ottomans.
Algeria is a semi presidential republic consisting of 48 provinces and 1541 communes. With a population exceeding 37 million, it is the 34th most populated country on earth. Its economy is oil based, suffering from Dutch disease. Sonatrach, the national oil company, is the largest company in Africa. Algeria has the second largest army in Africa, after Egypt, and has Russia and China as strategic allies, and arms furnisher. Algeria is the tenth-largest country in the world and the largest in Africa, after the secession of South Sudan on the 9th of July 2011 from Sudan, the latter being the former biggest country in Africa. The country is bordered in the northeast by Tunisia, in the east by Libya, in the west by Morocco, in the southwest by Western Sahara, Mauritania, and Mali, in the southeast by Niger, and in the north by the Mediterranean Sea. Algeria is a member of the African Union, the Arab League, OPEC and the United Nations, and is a founding member of the Arab Maghreb Union.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Albania .... 10

Football is the most popular Sport in Albania, both at a participatory and spectator level. The Sport is governed by the Football Association of Albania created in 1930, member of FIFA and a founding member of UEFA. Other sports played include Basketball, Volleyball, Tennis, Swimming, Rugby union, and Gymnastics.
The cuisine of Albania – as with most Mediterranean and Balkan nations – is strongly influenced by its long history. At different times, the territory which is now Albania has been claimed or occupied by Greece, Serbia, Italy and the Ottoman Turks and each group has left its mark on Albanian cuisine. The main meal of Albanians is the midday meal, which is usually accompanied by a salad of fresh vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers and olives with olive oil, vinegar and salt. It also includes a main dish of vegetables and meat. Seafood specialties are also common in the coastal cities of Durrës, Sarandë and Vlorë. In high altitude localities, smoked meat and pickled preserves are common.