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How Many Countries Are There in the World?

MIN READMar 2, 2021 | 22:22 GMT

People stand over a world map at the Monument to the Discoveries in the Belem parish of Lisbon, Portugal, on Aug. 21, 2014.

(Frederic Soltan/Corbis via Getty Images)

How many countries are there in the world? It’s a seemingly simple question. But like so many things in geopolitics, the answer is, well...complicated. The 1933 Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States listed four requirements for statehood: a permanent population, a defined territory, a government and the capacity to enter into relations with other states. The issue, however, is defining who meets that criteria, which varies depending on who you ask.  ...

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