Title: The Plurinational State of Bolivia

Population: 11,758,869

Population Change: 1.39

National Average Age: 26

Urban Percentage: 69

Christian Population: 9,730,000

Christian Percentage: 89

Introduction: Bolivia is a country in central South America with a varied terrain spanning Andes Mountains the Atacama Desert and Amazon Basin rainforest. At more than 3500m its administrative capital La Paz sits on the Andes’ Altiplano plateau with snow-capped Mt. Illimani in the background. Nearby is glass-smooth Lake Titicaca the continent’s largest lake straddling the border with Peru.

Overview: Bolivia named after independence fighter Simon BOLIVAR broke away from Spanish rule in 1825; much of its subsequent history has consisted of a series of nearly 200 coups and countercoups. Democratic civilian rule was established in 1982 but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty social unrest and illegal drug production. ++ In December 2005 Bolivians elected Movement Toward Socialism leader Evo MORALES president - by the widest margin of any leader since the restoration of civilian rule in 1982 - after he ran on a promise to change the country's traditional political class and empower the nation's poor indigenous majority. In December 2009 and October 2014 President MORALES easily won reelection. His party maintained control of the legislative branch of the government which has allowed him to continue his process of change. In October 2011 the country held its first judicial elections to select judges for the four highest courts. MORALES has publicly described the elected judiciary as a failed experiment that has not resolved judicial backlogs or extended pre-trial detention. He has called for a public referendum on the judicial system.