Country Bhutan


Kingdom in Asia, on the NE border of India, and S of the Tibet region of China. The Himalaya Mountains run north and south here, dividing the land into valleys that are heavily cultivated. Ethnically linked to the Tibetans, most of the populace practices a form of Buddhism related to Lamaism. Bhutan’s early history is vague, but it has existed as an entity for centuries. The Tibetans conquered it in the 16th century, and c. 1630 a refugee Tibetan lama made himself dharma raja (spiritual ruler) and named a deb raja (temporal ruler). For a time after 1720 the Chinese established suzerainty over Bhutan. In the 18th and early 19th centuries there were attempts by the British to secure control, and in 1907 Sir Ugyen Wangchuk, the first of a hereditary line, was crowned king with British support.

In 1949 newly independent India took over the management of Bhutan’s defense and foreign affairs from Great Britain. The following year China occupied Tibet and claimed Bhutan, which caused India to make greater provision for defense. King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, who ruled from 1953 to 1972, abolished slavery and the caste system, emancipated women, and divided up large estates. In 1969 the monarchy was made more democratic. Jigme Singhi Wangchuk became king in 1972. The new king gradually introduced democratic structures into the Bhutanese government. In 1989, there was an uprising of ethnic Nepalese against the imposition of Bhutanese culture and thousand s were expelled from the country to Nepal. In 1999, the head of government became head of the cabinet, which is responsible to the national assembly (though the king retained much influence). In 2003, Bhutanese troops attacked bases in Bhutan where Assamese rebels had been making incursions into India. In 2005, a draft of a new constitution was released. Thimbu is the official capital, but Punaka is the traditional capital.

Bhutan Images


Bhutan: Top Cities

Juba 300,000 Bahr el Gabel 31.58 x 4.85 Africa/Khartoum
Malakal 160,765 Upper Nile State 31.66 x 9.54 Africa/Khartoum
Wau 127,384 Western Bahr al Ghazal 28.00 x 7.70 Africa/Khartoum
Thimphu 98,676 Thimphu Dzongkhag 89.64 x 27.47 Asia/Thimphu
Yei 40,382 Bahr el Gabel 30.68 x 4.09 Africa/Khartoum
Yambio 40,382 Western Equatoria State 28.42 x 4.57 Africa/Khartoum
Awel 38,745 Northern Bahr el Ghazal State 27.39 x 8.77 Africa/Khartoum
Gogrial 38,572 Warrap 28.11 x 8.53 Africa/Khartoum
Rumbek 32,083 El Buhayrat 29.69 x 6.80 Africa/Khartoum
Bor 26,782 Jonglei State 31.55 x 6.21 Africa/Khartoum
Torit 20,048 Eastern Equatoria 32.57 x 4.41 Africa/Khartoum
Tonj 17,338 Warrap 28.75 x 7.28 Africa/Khartoum
Phuntsholing 17,043 Chhukha Dzongkhag 89.39 x 26.85 Asia/Thimphu
Maridi 14,224 Western Equatoria State 29.48 x 4.91 Africa/Khartoum
Ler 10,486 Unity State 30.13 x 8.30 Africa/Khartoum
Tambura 9,483 Western Equatoria State 27.47 x 5.60 Africa/Khartoum
Bentiu 7,653 Unity State 29.83 x 9.23 Africa/Khartoum
Kapoeta 7,042 Eastern Equatoria 33.59 x 4.77 Africa/Khartoum
Raga 3,700 Western Bahr al Ghazal 25.68 x 8.46 Africa/Khartoum
Pajo 3,032 89.88 x 27.53 Asia/Thimphu
Tashi Yangtse 3,025 Trashi Yangste 91.47 x 27.58 Asia/Thimphu
Mongar 2,969 Mongar Dzongkhag 91.20 x 27.25 Asia/Thimphu
Tongsa 2,805 Trongsa Dzongkhag 90.50 x 27.52 Asia/Thimphu
Daga 2,243 Dagana Dzongkhag 89.88 x 27.07 Asia/Thimphu
Paro 2,169 Paro 89.42 x 27.43 Asia/Thimphu
Ha 1,449 Haa Dzongkhag 89.28 x 27.37 Asia/Thimphu
Panbang 1,360 Zhemgang Dzongkhag 90.98 x 26.87 Asia/Thimphu
Gasa 548 Gasa 89.73 x 27.90 Asia/Thimphu