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US Country profile

The USA is the world's foremost economic and military power, with global interests and an unmatched global reach. America's gross domestic product accounts for close to a quarter of the world total, and its military budget is reckoned to be almost as much as the rest of the world's defence spending put together.
The United States originated in a revolution which separated it from the British Crown. The constitution, drafted in 1787, established a federal system with a division of powers which has remained unchanged in form since its inception.

The US contains a highly diverse population, the product of numerous and sustained waves of immigration. Ethnic and racial diversity - the "melting pot" - is celebrated as a core element of the American ideology.

The 1964 Civil Rights Act outlawed racial and other discrimination, but race continues to be a live issue.

The election of Barack Obama as the country's first African-American president in November 2008 marked a defining moment in the country's chequered history of race relations.

Full name:
United States of America
President: Barack Obama
317.6 million (UN, 2010)
Capital: Washington DC
Largest city: New York City
Area: 9.8 million sq km (3.8 million sq miles)
Major language: English
Major religion: Christianity
Life expectancy: 78 years (men), 82 years (women) (UN)
Monetary unit: 1 US dollar = 100 cents
Main exports: Computers and electrical machinery, vehicles, chemical products, food and live animals, military equipment and aircraft
GNI per capita: US $47,240 (World Bank, 2009)
International dialling code: +1

Source: BBC
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