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Zimbabwe, officially the Republic of Zimbabwe, is a landlocked country located in southern Africa, between the Zambezi and Limpopo rivers. It is bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the southwest, Zambia to the northwest and Mozambique to the east. The capital is Harare. Zimbabwe achieved de jure sovereignty from the United Kingdom in April 1980, following 14 years as an unrecognized state under the conservative white minority government of Rhodesia, which unilaterally declared independence in 1965.
Zimbabwe has 16 official languages, with English, Shona and Ndebele being most common. The present territory was first demarcated by Cecil Rhodes’ British South Africa Company during the 1890s, becoming a self-governing colony as Southern Rhodesia in 1923. President Robert Mugabe is head of state and commander-in-chief of the armed forces. Renowned as a champion for the anti-colonial cause, Mugabe is also viewed as an authoritarian responsible for Zimbabwe’s problematic human rights record and substantial economic decline. He has held power since internationally recognised independence in 1980: as head of government since 1980 and head of state since 1987.