Continents / Europe / Political

Political map of Europe

Political map of Europe
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A common question is to know if Turkey and Russia are part of Europe or Asia. Following the definition given above, they are both on the two continents. The part of Russia located on the west of the Ural Mountains is in Europe and the part on the east is in Asia. Russia is mostly considered to be a European country because the majority of its population and its capital city are located in the European part.

For Turkey, the Turkish straits delimits the boundary between Asia and Europe. So Turkey is for its biggest part on the Asian continent, but its capital city Istanbul is located on the both continents because the border between Europe and Asia is located on the Bosphorus Strait, which cut the city in two.

Iceland is also a special case because it is located on the border between Europe and North America, but the country is considered as part of Europe.

Cyprus is also a special case and it is considered as a European country because of its long common history with Greece. In this case it is a political definition that has been taken rather than a physical one.

The attempt of Europe to integrate Turkey in the Europe show a clear willing of leaving the clear geographical definition to an area without physical limits, but based on political decisions. Above this, some island in the Atlantic, the Greenland and some overseas department are considered as part of Europe because they are part or are dependencies of a European countries and so their culture or their people are considered as European.

As a conclusion, this brings Europe to a total of 50 sovereign states.