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Basutoland was renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho upon independence from the UK in 1966. The Basuto National Party ruled for the first two decades. King MOSHOESHOE was exiled in 1990, but returned to Lesotho in 1992 and was reinstated in 1995 and subsequently succeeded by his son, King LETSIE III, in 1996. Constitutional government was restored in 1993 after seven years of military rule. In 1998, violent protests and a military mutiny following a contentious election prompted a brief but bloody intervention by South African and Botswana military forces under the aegis of the Southern African Development Community. Subsequent constitutional reforms restored relative political stability. Peaceful parliamentary elections were held in 2002, but the National Assembly elections of February 2007 were hotly contested and aggrieved parties continue to dispute how the electoral law was applied to award proportional seats in the Assembly.


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Communications

Telephones - main lines in use World Ranking: 169
38,800 (2009)

Telephones - mobile cellular World Ranking: 158
698,800 (2009)

Telephone system
General assessment
Rudimentary system consisting of a modest number of landlines, a small microwave radio relay system, and a small radiotelephone communication system; mobile-cellular telephone system is expanding
Domestic
Privatized in 2001, Telecom Lesotho was tasked with providing an additional 50,000 fixed-line connections within five years, a target not met; mobile-cellular service dominates the market and is expanding with a subscribership exceeding 35 per 100 persons in 2010; rural services are scant
International
Country code - 266; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2009)

Broadcast media
1 state-owned TV station and 2 state-owned radio stations; government controls most private broadcast media; satellite TV subscription service available; transmissions of multiple international broadcasters obtainable (2008)

Internet country code
.ls

Internet hosts World Ranking: 164
1,581 (2010)

Internet users World Ranking: 167
76,800 (2009)


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  Lesotho (Maseru):


  GPS points from Lesotho (Maseru)

Thaba-tseka Thaba-tseka

Mount Austin Lesotho (general)

Matebi Lesotho (general)

Molumong Lesotho (general)

Likhoele Lesotho (general)

Likhoele Mafeteng District

Tebe-tebeng River Lesotho (general)

Mokopo Stream Lesotho (general)




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