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Lithuania:
Geography

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Background
Definition
Lithuanian lands were united under MINDAUGAS in 1236; over the next century, through alliances and conquest, Lithuania extended its territory to include most of present-day Belarus and Ukraine. By the end of the 14th century Lithuania was the largest state in Europe. An alliance with Poland in 1386 led the two countries into a union through the person of a common ruler. In 1569, Lithuania and Poland formally united into a single dual state, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. This entity survived until 1795, when its remnants were partitioned by surrounding countries. Lithuania regained its independence following World War I but was annexed by the USSR in 1940 - an action never recognized by the US and many other countries. On 11 March 1990, Lithuania became the first of the Soviet republics to declare its independence, but Moscow did not recognize this proclamation until September of 1991 (following the abortive coup in Moscow). The last Russian troops withdrew in 1993. Lithuania subsequently restructured its economy for integration into Western European institutions; it joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004.
Location
Definition
Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, between Latvia and Russia
Geographic coordinates
Definition
56 00 N, 24 00 E
Map references
Definition
Europe
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 65,300 sq km
land: NA sq km
water: NA sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly larger than West Virginia
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 1,644 km
border countries: Belarus 679 km, Latvia 588 km, Poland 104 km, Russia (Kaliningrad) 273 km
Coastline
Definition
90 km
Maritime claims
Definition
territorial sea: 12 nm
Climate
Definition
transitional, between maritime and continental; wet, moderate winters and summers
Terrain
Definition
lowland, many scattered small lakes, fertile soil
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Baltic Sea 0 m
highest point: Juozapines Kalnas 293.6 m
Natural resources
Definition
peat, arable land, amber
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 44.81%
permanent crops: 0.9%
other: 54.29% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
70 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
24.5 cu km (2005)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 3.33 cu km/yr (78%/15%/7%)
per capita: 971 cu m/yr (2003)
Natural hazards
Definition
NA
Environment - current issues
Definition
contamination of soil and groundwater with petroleum products and chemicals at military bases
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
Definition
fertile central plains are separated by hilly uplands that are ancient glacial deposits


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