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The Dominican Republic, (Spanish: República Dominicana, IPA [re'pußlika domini'kana]) is a country located on the eastern two-thirds of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, bordering Haiti. Hispaniola is the second-largest of the Greater Antilles islands, and lies west of Puerto Rico and east of Cuba and Jamaica. A legacy of unsettled, mostly non-representative rule lasted for much of the 20th century; the move towards representative democracy has improved vastly since the death of military dictator Rafael Leónidas Trujillo in 1961. Dominicans sometimes refer to their country as Quisqueya, a name for Hispaniola used by indigenous Taíno people. The Dominican Republic is not to be confused with Dominica, another Caribbean country.
The capital of the country is the city of Santo Domingo (full name Santo Domingo de Guzman), located in the Southern part of the island. Originally a single city located within the province Distrito Nacional (National District), it has now been divided into a Province of Santo Domingo and the National District. The Province of Santo Domingo is comprised of several municipalities: Santo Domingo Norte (North Santo Domingo), Santo Domingo Este (East Santo Domingo, which is the provincial capital), Santo Domingo Oeste (West Santo Domingo) and Boca Chica. The Ozama River serves a natural border between the National District and the Province of Santo Domingo. Thus the capital city of the Country is the City of Santo Domingo de Guzman, Province of National District. The second largest city is Santiago de los Caballeros, more commonly referred to as simply Santiago.
The country has three major mountain ranges: The Central Mountains (Cordillera Central), which originate in Haiti and span the central part of the island, ending up in the south. This mountain range boasts the highest peak in the Antilles, Pico Duarte (3,087 m / 10,128 ft above sea level). The Septentrional Mountains, running parallel to the Central Mountains, separate the Cibao Valley and the Atlantic coastal plains. The highest point here is Pico Diego de Ocampo. The lowest and shortest of the three ranges is the Eastern Mountains, in the eastern part of the country. There are also the Sierra Bahoruco and the Sierra Neyba in the southwest. This is a country of many rivers, including the navigable Soco, Higuamo, Romana (also known as 'Rio Dulce'), Yaque del Norte, Yaque del Sur, Yuna, Yuma, and Bajabonico. Puerto Plata's Mount. Isabela is famous for the Cuban plane that crashed there in 1992.
The two largest islands, nearshore, are Saona Island in the southeast and Beata Island in the southwest. To the north, at a distance between 100 and 200 km, are three extensive, largely submerged banks, which geographically are a southeast continuation of the Bahamas:
Navidad and Silver Banks have been officially claimed by the Dominican Republic.
Information provided by Wikipedia
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