Cities in MALTA
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Malta was independent from 1964 to 1974, but the Queen of England was still head of state. Since 1974, Malta has been a republic headed by a president. The president is elected by the parliament (House of Representatives) for a term of five years. Parliament has had 65 members since 1987, who are elected by universal suffrage according to a district system consisting of thirteen constituencies. A constitutional amendment then ensured that the party with an absolute majority vote would get as many additional parliamentary seats if necessary until there would be a majority seat. The president appoints the member of parliament who has a majority of parliament behind him as prime minister. The prime minister appoints the other ministers and state secretaries, who must be members of parliament. There is a separate minister who looks after the interests of Gozo. The maximum term of parliament is five years, but the prime minister can always call new elections within this term and must do so if a government proposal is rejected. Malta has no administrative division into provinces and municipalities, but has traditionally been divided into parishes.
Since 1966, only two political parties have remained in parliament: the Malta Labor Party, and the Christian Democratic Partit Nazzjonalista (PN). The PN has ruled since 1987 and is pro-Western and pro-Europe and finds its support mainly among the academics, the clergy, the bourgeoisie, the middle class and the peasants, but also has a fair number of workers. The parties play a major role in everyday life. The newspapers thus represent the position of one of the two parties. Malta is affiliated with the following international organizations: the United Nations, a number of UN sub-organizations, and the Council of Europe. In 1990 an application was made for membership of the EU. Malta is part of the Commonwealth. In April 1995, parliament approved the NATO Partnership for Peace. For the current political situation see chapter history.
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Maltese children are of compulsory school age from the ages of six to sixteen. Malta is proud of its university which has been established on the island since 1592. It is the oldest Commonwealth university outside of Great Britain. There is also a tourist school on the island. Every year 1,500 Maltese graduate there as cook, waiter or guide.
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Boulton, S. / Malta
Cutajar, D. / Malta en Gozo
Leeuwen, G. van / Malta
Strijbos, E. / Malta en Gozo
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