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Island country in the Indian Ocean
Mauritius ( (listen) mə-RISH-(ee-)əs, maw-; French: Maurice [mɔʁis, moʁis] (listen); Creole: Moris [moʁis]), officially the Republic of Mauritius is an island nation in the Indian Ocean about 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) off the south-east coast of the African continent. The country includes the islands of Mauritius, Rodrigues, Agaléga and St. Brandon. The islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues form part of the Mascarene Islands, along with nearby Réunion, a French overseas department. The capital and largest city, Port Louis, is located on the main island of Mauritius. The country is 2,040 square kilometres (790 sq mi) in area, while its Exclusive Economic Zone covers 2.3 million square kilometres.Arab sailors located the uninhabited island around 975, and they named it Dina Arobi. The Dutch took possession of it in 1598, held it for over a century, but abandoned it in 1710. The French took control in 1715, renaming it Isle de France. France officially ceded Mauritius including all its dependencies to the United Kingdom (UK) through the Treaty of Paris, signed on 30 May 1814 and in which Réunion was returned to France. The British colony of Mauritius consisted of the main island of Mauritius along with Rodrigues, Agalega, St Brandon, Tromelin and the Chagos Archipelago, while the Seychelles became a separate colony in 1906. The sovereignty of Tromelin is disputed between Mauritius and France as some of the islands such as St. Brandon, Chagos, Agalega and Tromelin were not specifically mentioned in the Treaty of Paris.In 1965, three years prior to the independence of Mauritius, the UK split the Chagos Archipelago from Mauritian territory, and the islands of Aldabra, Farquhar and Desroches from the Seychelles, to form the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT). The UK forcibly expelled the archipelago's local population and leased its largest island, Diego Garcia, to the United States. The UK has restricted access to the Chagos Archipelago; it has been prohibited to casual tourists, the media, and its former inhabitants. The sovereignty of the Chagos is disputed between Mauritius and the UK. In February 2019, in an advisory opinion given by the International Court of Justice on this dispute, the UK was ordered to hand back the Chagos Islands to Mauritius as rapidly as possible, in order to complete the decolonisation of Mauritius. The people of Mauritius are multiethnic, multi-religious, multicultural and multilingual. The island's government is closely modelled on the Westminster parliamentary system, and Mauritius is highly ranked for democracy and for economic and political freedom. Mauritius is categorised as "high" in the Human Development Index. According to the World Bank, the country has an upper-middle-income economy. Mauritius is ranked as the most competitive and one of the most developed economies in the African region. The country is a welfare state; the government provides free universal health care, free education up to tertiary level and free public transport for students, senior citizens, and the disabled. Mauritius was ranked among the safest or most peaceful countries by the Global Peace Index 2019.Along with the other Mascarene Islands, Mauritius is known for its varied flora and fauna, with many species endemic to the island. The island was the only known home of the dodo, which, along with several other avian species, was made extinct by human activities relatively shortly after the island's settlement. Mauritius is the only country in Africa where Hinduism is the largest religion. The administration uses English as its main language. .... Learn more at Wikipedia
Since 2005 public bus in Mauritius is free of charge for students, people with disabilities and senior citizens. There are currently no railways in Mauritius, former privately owned industrial railways having been abandoned. The harbour of Port Louis handles international trade as well as a cruise terminal. The sole international airport for civil aviation is Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport, which also serves as the home operating base for the national airline Air Mauritius; the airport authority inaugurated a new passenger terminal in September 2013. Another airport is the Sir Gaëtan Duval Airport in Rodrigues. Mauritius has a serious traffic problem due to the high number of road users, particularly car drivers. To solve the traffic congestion issue, the government has embarked on the Metro Express project. The line starts from Port Louis and will go to Curepipe when completed. The first phase of the project was completed in January 2020 while the second phase will be completed in 2021.