The Republic of Guinea is a country in West Africa. Formerly a part of the French Empire and known as French Guinea, the modern country is sometimes referred to as Guinea-Conakry in order to distinguish it from other parts of the wider region of the same name, such as Guinea-Bissau and Equatorial Guinea. Guinea has a population of 10.5 million and an area of 245,860 square kilometres (94,927 sq mi). The name comes from the Portuguese generic term Guiné, which emerged in the mid-15th century to refer to the lands inhabited by the Guineus, a generic term for the black peoples below the Senegal River, as opposed to the 'tawny' Zenaga Berbers (or Moors) above it.
Guinea is a predominantly Islamic country, with Muslims representing 85 percent of the population. Guinea's people belong to 24 ethnic groups, each with its own language, although French is the official tongue.
Guinea's economy is largely dependent on agriculture and mineral production. Human rights in Guinea remain a controversial issue. In 2011 the United States government claimed that torture by security forces, and female genital mutilation, were ongoing abuses of human rights. Guinea was at the core of the 2014 Ebola outbreak.