The Bahamas (/bəˈhɑːməz/ (listen)), known officially as the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, is a country within the Lucayan Archipelago of the West Indies in the Caribbean. It takes up 97% of the Lucayan Archipelago's land area and is home to 88% of the archipelago's population. The archipelagic state consists of fewer than 700 islands, cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean, and is located north of Cuba and Hispaniola Island (Haitiand the Dominican Republic), northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands, southeast of the US state of Florida, and east of the Florida Keys. The capital is Nassau on the island of New Providence. The Royal Bahamas Defence Force describes The Bahamas' territory as encompassing 470,000 km2(180,000 sq mi) of ocean space.
The national flag of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas consists of a black triangle situated at the hoist with three horizontal bands: aquamarine, gold and aquamarine. Adopted in 1973 to replace the British Blue Ensign defaced with the emblem of the Crown Colony of the Bahama Islands, it has been the flag of the The Bahamas since the country gained independence that year. The design of the present flag incorporated the elements of various submissions made in a national contest for a new flag prior to independence.
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