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Republic of Paraguay

Location: Central South America, northeast of Argentina

Area: 406,750 sq km

Climate: subtropical; substantial rainfall in the eastern portions, becoming semiarid in the far west

Terrain: grassy plains and wooded hills east of Rio Paraguay; Gran Chaco region west of Rio Paraguay mostly low, marshy plain near the river, and dry forest and thorny scrub elsewhere

Population: 5,434,095 (July 1999 est.)

Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, Mennonite and other Protestant denominations

Languages: Spanish (official), Guarani

Capital: Asuncion

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