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A landlocked nation in West Africa, Burkina Faso is surrounded by six countries: Mali to the north, Niger to the east, Benin to the south east, Togo and Ghana to the south, and Côte d'Ivoire to the south west. Formerly the Republic of Upper Volta, it was renamed on August 4, 1984 by President Thomas Sankara to mean "the land of upright people" (or "upright land") in Mossi and Dioula, the major native languages of the country.
Burkina Faso has significant reserves of gold, but cotton is the economic mainstay for many Burkinabes. The country is also known to issue beautiful coins, especially those featuring wild animals.
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