DEMOGRAPHY, Libya                                                                                             Date Posted:...
Awbari                      70,000                   0.8Ash-Shati                   70,000                   0.7Murzuq    ...
Language TOPArabic is the most commonly used language in all aspects of Libyan communication,although Italian and English ...
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Libya - Demography 2006

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Libya - Demography 2006

  1. 1. DEMOGRAPHY, Libya Date Posted: 16-Feb-2006 Janes Sentinel Security Assessment - North Africa DEMOGRAPHYSocial Indicators TOPRegional Distribution TOPOverall population distribution between the three main geographical regions is about 60 percent (3.3 million) in Tripolitania (west coast), 30 per cent (1.5 million) in Cyrenaica (eastcoast), and 10 per cent (600,000) in the desert interior. In coastal Cyrenaica and Tripolitaniathe population density is more than 50 per km2; in the desert it is less than one person perkm2.The most populous cities of Libya are Tripoli (with around 1.5 million inhabitants), Benghazi(over 600,000), Homs (up to 200,000) and Misurata (150,000). Urban migration is of seriousconcern to the Libyan authorities. The urbanised proportion of the population is nowestimated to be 84 per cent. It is hoped that projects such as the Great Man-Made River willencourage a reversal of the trend.District Population (2003 estimate) Density (population per km2)Tarabulus (Tripoli) 1,500,000 570Bangazi (Benghazi) 720,000 62Az-Zawiyah 330,000 81An-Nuqat al-Khams 270,000 52Misratah (Misurata) 260,000 122Al-Khums (Homs) 220,000 109Al-Jabal al-Akhdar 180,000 26Gharyan 170,000 2.2Darnah 160,000 7.5Surt (Sirte) 160,000 2.9Zlitan 150,000 52Al-Fatih 150,000 11Ajdabiya 150,000 0.7Al-Aziziyah 130,000 77Tubruq (Tobruk) 140,000 1.5Tarhunah 130,000 52Yafran 110,000 10Sabha (Sebha) 110,000 6.6Ghadamis 80,000 1.1Sawfajjin 70,000 1.3This page was saved from http://search.janes.com Did you know Janes Strategic Advisory Services can provide impartial, thoroughly researched market evaluation, providing© Janes Information Group, All rights reserved you with the same reliable insight you expect to find in our publications and online services?
  2. 2. Awbari 70,000 0.8Ash-Shati 70,000 0.7Murzuq 60,000 0.2Al-Kufrah 40,000 0.1Al-Jufrah 30,000 0.3Ethnic Groups TOPThe majority of Libyan people are of Berber-Arab descent. While there are very few Libyanswho could claim to be pure Arab, there are still distinct Berber groups southwest of Tripolinear the Tunisian border, as well as other smaller minority groups, such as the nomadicTuareg people of the southwestern desert and a small number of Toubou, a nomadic groupthat mainly lives in Chad, in the far south of Libya.The population also includes large minorities of Tunisians, Egyptians and other Arabs,including Palestinians, as well as some south Asians attracted by higher wages in Libyas oileconomy. Over recent decades a significant number of black Africans, mainly from Sudan,Chad, Mali, Niger and Nigeria, have migrated to Libya for economic reasons. Foreign workerpresence peaked in the mid-1990s with an estimated one-third of the total population. Thiscoincided with an increase in domestic unemployment and led to the expulsion of hundredsof thousands of workers from 1995. African workers were the target of anti-black riots inSeptember 2000 when as many as 500 were killed by angry mobs and several thousandillegal workers were subsequently deported. Although tens of thousands of West Africanscontinue to cross the Sahara to Libya annually, most now seek to use the Libyan coast as aspringboard for crossing the Mediterranean to Italy and other EU states. These cannot beincluded within Libyas resident population.Ethnic groups Per centLibyan Arab 75Egyptian and other Arab 15Black African 6Berber 3Tuareg and Toubou 1Note· All figures are 2003 estimates. Ethnic GroupsThis page was saved from http://search.janes.com Did you know Janes Strategic Advisory Services can provide impartial, thoroughly researched market evaluation, providing© Janes Information Group, All rights reserved you with the same reliable insight you expect to find in our publications and online services?
  3. 3. Language TOPArabic is the most commonly used language in all aspects of Libyan communication,although Italian and English are understood by many of the better educated inhabitants of thecountrys larger cities. Berber and Tamasheq (Tuareg) dialects are spoken in localised areas.Religion TOPThe vast majority of the population is of the Sunni Muslim faith and follows the Malikischool; consequently, there are few cleavages in society caused by religious friction. Themore mystical Sufi branch of Islam has also had an impact on Libya, especially the Sanusirevivalist movement that helped the Cyrencia region of Libya resist Italian colonisation. TheSanusi order was eventually crushed by the Italians and although King Idris, who ruled fromindependence until he was deposed in 1969, was a Sanusi, the movement failed to launch awidespread revival and was effectively banned by Ghadaffi. Although Islam has beendeclared the state religion, other denominations are tolerated and the regime remainscompletely intolerant of any form of politicised Islam, continuing to persecute those itsuspects of being part of the Islamist opposition.Religion Per centSunni Muslim 97Other 3 ReligionUPDATED2006 Janes Information GroupThis page was saved from http://search.janes.com Did you know Janes Strategic Advisory Services can provide impartial, thoroughly researched market evaluation, providing© Janes Information Group, All rights reserved you with the same reliable insight you expect to find in our publications and online services?
  4. 4. This page was saved from http://search.janes.com Did you know Janes Strategic Advisory Services can provide impartial, thoroughly researched market evaluation, providing© Janes Information Group, All rights reserved you with the same reliable insight you expect to find in our publications and online services?

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