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Dominica was the last of the Caribbean islands to be colonized by Europeans due chiefly to the fierce resistance of the native Caribs. France ceded possession to Great Britain in 1763, which made the island a colony in 1805. In 1980, two years after independence, Dominica's fortunes improved when a corrupt and tyrannical administration was replaced by that of Mary Eugenia CHARLES, the first female prime minister in the Caribbean, who remained in office for 15 years. Some 3,000 Carib Indians still living on Dominica are the only pre-Columbian population remaining in the eastern Caribbean.


Government

Country name
Conventional long form Commonwealth of Dominica
Conventional short form Dominica

Government type
Parliamentary democracy


 
Capital
Name Roseau
Geographic coordinates 15 18 N, 61 24 W
Time difference
UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions
10 parishes; Saint Andrew, Saint David, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Joseph, Saint Luke, Saint Mark, Saint Patrick, Saint Paul, Saint Peter

Independence
3 November 1978 (from the UK)

Constitution
3 November 1978


 
Legal system
Common law based on the English model

International law organization participation
Accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Suffrage
18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state
President Nicholas J. O. LIVERPOOL (since October 2003)
Head of government
Prime Minister Roosevelt SKERRIT (since 8 January 2004)
Cabinet
Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
Elections
President elected by the House of Assembly for a five-year term; election last held on 1 October 2003 (next to be held in 2013); prime minister appointed by the president
Election results
In the absence of an opposition candidate, Nicholas LIVERPOOL consented to a second term in 2008 at the request of the prime minister and leader of the opposition and no formal election was held in 2008

Legislative branch
Unicameral House of Assembly (30 seats; 9 members appointed, 21 elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
Elections
Last held on 18 December 2009 (next to be held in 2015); note - tradition dictates that the election will be held within five years of the last election, but technically it is five years from the first seating of parliament (12 May 2005) plus a 90-day grace period
Election results
Percent of vote by party - DLP 61.2%, UWP 34.9%, other 3.9%; seats by party - DLP 18, UWP 3

Judicial branch
Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, consisting of the Court of Appeal and the High Court (located in Saint Lucia; one of the six judges must reside in Dominica and preside over the Court of Summary Jurisdiction)

Political parties and leaders
Dominica Freedom Party or DFP [Charles SAVARIN]; Dominica Labor Party or DLP [Roosevelt SKERRIT]; Dominica United Workers Party or UWP [Earl WILLIAMS]

Political pressure groups and leaders
Dominica Liberation Movement or DLM (a small leftist party)

International organization participation
ACP, AOSIS, C, Caricom, CDB, CELAC, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OECS, OIF, OPANAL, OPCW, Petrocaribe, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the us
Chief of mission Ambassador Hubert J. CHARLES
Chancery
3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016
Telephone [1] (202) 364-6781
FAX [1] (202) 364-6791
Consulate(s) general New York

Diplomatic representation from the us
The US does not have an embassy in Dominica; the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Dominica

Flag description
Green, with a centered cross of three equal bands - the vertical part is yellow (hoist side), black, and white and the horizontal part is yellow (top), black, and white; superimposed in the center of the cross is a red disk bearing a Sisserou parrot, unique to Dominica, encircled by 10 green, five-pointed stars edged in yellow; the 10 stars represent the 10 administrative divisions (parishes); green symbolizes the island's lush vegetation; the triple-colored cross represents the Christian Trinity; the yellow color denotes sunshine, the main agricultural products (citrus and bananas), and the native Carib Indians; black is for the rich soil and the African heritage of most citizens; white signifies rivers, waterfalls, and the purity of aspirations; the red disc stands for social justice

National symbol(s)
Sisserou parrot

National anthem
Name
"Isle of Beauty, Isle of Splendor"
Lyrics/music
Wilfred Oscar Morgan POND/Lemuel McPherson CHRISTIAN
Note Adopted 1967


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  Dominica (Roseau):


  GPS points from Dominica (Roseau)

Boeri River Saint George

Hatton Garden Dominica (general)

Tarou Point Saint Paul

Point Ronde Saint John

La Pointe Saint Luke

Mahaut River Saint David

Good Hope Saint David

Belle Fille River Saint David




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