Italy

Italy

Italy is a unitary parliamentary republic in Southern Europe. To the north, it borders France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia along the Alps. To the south, it consists of the entirety of the Italian Peninsula, Sicily, Sardinia–the two largest islands in the Mediterranean Sea–and many other smaller islands. The independent states of San Marino and the Vatican City are enclaves within Italy, while Campione d’Italia is an Italian exclave in Switzerland. The territory of Italy covers some 301,338 km2 and is influenced by a temperate seasonal climate. With 60.8 million inhabitants, it is the fifth most populous country in Europe, and the 23rd most populous in the world.

Italy currently maintains the world’s eleventh-largest nominal defence budget and is a participant in the NATO nuclear sharing policy. With Italy’s political, military, social and economic influence in Europe, it is considered a main middle power and referred to as a regional power.

Italy is home to the greatest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites (47) to date, and has rich collections of art, culture and literature from many different periods. The country has had a broad cultural influence worldwide, also because numerous Italians emigrated to other places during the Italian diaspora.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy


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