The island was settled by people of African and Indonesian origin when it was visited by the Portuguese explorer, Diego Diaz, in 1500. The island was unified under the Imérina monarchy between 1797 and 1861. A French protectorate was established in 1895. Madagascar became a French colony on 6 Aug. 1896 and achieved independence on 26 June 1960.
KeywordsMayoral Election High State Authority Strict Nature Reserve French Colony Culture World Heritage Site
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