The Republic of Guinea-Bissau has an estimated population of 1.6 million (UN, 2010). The capital is Bissau. Guinea-Bissau has an area of 36,125 sq km (13,948 sq miles). The main languages are Portuguese, Crioulo, and other African Languages.
Political instability has plagued Guinea-Bissau since achieving independence in 1974 from Portugal. Guinea-Bissau is emerging from a civil war during the late 1990s, which killed and displaced thousands of people. Guinea-Bissau is one of the poorest countries in the world and its economy relies heavily on foreign aid.
The constitution and legislation of Guinea-Bissau forbid all forms of discrimination on the ground of gender and grants equal rights to men and women. In reality, the government is not in position to enforce the principle of non-discrimination. Violence against women continues to be a serious concern in Guinea-Bissau.