COUNTRY PROFILE: LIBYA
Formal Name: Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
(Al Jumahiriyah al Arabiyah al Libiyah ash Shabiyah al Ishtirakiyah
Short Form: Libya.
Term for Citizen(s): Libyan(s).
Capital: Tripoli (also known as Tarabulus), with an estimated population of 1,223,300 in 2002.
Major Cities: Tripoli, Benghazi, Misratah, Az Zawiyah, Tobruk (according to decreasing size, 2000–2002 estimates).
Independence: December 24, 1951, from Italy.
NATIONAL Public Holidays: Commercial offices and government establishments are closed on Fridays. In 2005 the major holidays are: January 21* (Eid al Adha, Feast of the Sacrifice); February 10* (Islamic New Year); February 19* (Ashoura); March 28 (Evacuation Day); April 21* (Mouloud, Birth of Muhammad); June 11 (Evacuation Day); September 1 (Revolution Day); September 2* (Leilat al Meiraj, ascension of Muhammad); October 7 (Evacuation Day); November 4* (Eid al Fitr, end of Ramadan). Holidays that vary according to the Islamic lunar calendar are marked with an asterisk.
The flag is plain green, the traditional color of Islam (the state religion).