Algeria, officially the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria, is a country in the Maghreb region of North Africa. It is the largest country by total area in Africa, and by extension, the Arab world, and is bordered to the northeast by Tunisia; to the east by Libya; to the southeast by Niger; to the southwest by Mali, Mauritania, and Western Sahara; to the west by Morocco; and to the north by the Mediterranean Sea. The country has a semi-arid geography, with most of the population living in the fertile north and the Sahara dominating the geography of the south. Algeria covers an area of 2,381,741 square kilometres, making it the world's tenth largest nation by area. With a population of 44 million, and is the ninth-most populous country in Africa. The capital and largest city is Algiers, located in the far north on the Mediterranean coast.
Pre-1962 Algeria has seen many empires and dynasties, including ancient Numidians, Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Vandals, Byzantines, Umayyads, Abbasids, Rustamid, Idrisid, Aghlabids, Fatimids, Zirid, Hammadids, Almoravids, Almohads, Zayyanids, Spaniards, Ottomans and finally, the French Colonial Empire.