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Bhutan: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Kingdom of Bhutan
conventional short form: Bhutan
local long form: Druk Gyalkhap
local short form: Druk Yul
CapitalThimphu Thimphu
geographic coordinates: 27 28 N, 89 38 E
time difference: UTC+6 (11 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions20 districts (dzongkhag, singular and plural); Bumthang, Chhukha, Chirang, Daga, Gasa, Geylegphug, Ha, Lhuntshi, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatsel, Punakha, Samchi, Samdrup Jongkhar, Shemgang, Tashigang, Tashi Yangtse, Thimphu, Tongsa, Wangdi Phodrang
Constitutionprevious (various royal decrees); first constitution drafted November 2001 - March 2005, ratified 18 July 2008 (2011)
Executive branchchief of state: King Jigme Khesar Namgyel WANGCHUCK (since 14 December 2006); note - King Jigme Singye WANGCHUCK abdicated the throne on 14 December 2006 and his son immediately succeeded him; the nearly two-year delay between the former King's abdication and his son's coronation on 6 November 2008 was to ensure an astrologically auspicious coronation date and to give the new king, who had limited experience, deeper administrative expertise under the guidance of his father
head of government: Prime Minister Tshering TOBGAY (since July 2013)
cabinet: Council of Ministers (Lhengye Zhungtshog) nominated by the monarch in consultation with the prime minister and approved by the National Assembly; members serve fixed, five-year terms; the leader of the majority party is nominated as the prime minister
elections: the monarchy is hereditary, but the 2008 constitution grants the Parliament authority to remove the monarch with two-thirds vote; election of a National Assembly last occurred in July 2013, resulting in the transfer of power to the former opposition party
Flag descriptiondivided diagonally from the lower hoist-side corner; the upper triangle is yellow and the lower triangle is orange; centered along the dividing line is a large black and white dragon facing away from the hoist side; the dragon, called the Druk (Thunder Dragon), is the emblem of the nation; its white color stands for purity and the jewels in its claws symbolize wealth; the background colors represent spiritual and secular powers within Bhutan: the orange is associated with Buddhism, while the yellow denotes the ruling dynasty
Independence1907 (became a unified kingdom under its first hereditary king)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of 5 justices including the chief justice )
note - the Supreme Court has sole jurisdiction in constitutional matters
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court chief justice appointed by the monarch upon the advice of the National Judicial Commission, a 4-member body to include the Legislative Committee of the National Assembly, the attorney general, the Chief Justice of Bhutan and the senior Associate Justice of the Supreme Court; other judges (drangpons) appointed by the monarch from among the High Court judges selected by the National Judicial Commission; chief justice serves a 5-year term or until reaching age 65 years, whichever is earlier; the four other judges serve 10-year terms or until age 65, whichever is earlier
subordinate courts: High Court (first appellate court); District or Dzongkhag Courts; sub-district or Dungkhag Courts
Legal systemcivil law based on Buddhist religious law
Legislative branchbicameral Parliament or Chi Tshog consists of the non-partisan National Council or Gyelyong Tshogde (25 seats; 20 members elected by each of the 20 administrative districts (dzongkhags) for four-year terms and 5 members appointed by the king); and the National Assembly or Tshogdu (47 seats; members nominated by the two parties and elected by direct, popular vote for five-year terms)
elections: National Council election last held on 23 April 2013 (next to be held in 2017); National Assembly election (first round) held on 31 May 2013; second round on 13 July 2013
election results: National Council - independents 20; note - all candidates required to run as independents; National Assembly - first round poll held on 31 May 2013 - percent of vote by party - DPT 44.52%; PDP 32.53%; DNT 17.04%; DCT 5.9%; second round poll held on 13 July 2013 - percent of vote by party - PDP 54.88%, DPT 45.12%; seats by party - PDP 32, DPT 15
International organization participationADB, BIMSTEC, CP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, NAM, OPCW, SAARC, SACEP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)
National holidayNational Day (Ugyen WANGCHUCK became first hereditary king), 17 December (1907)
Political pressure groups and leadersUnited Front for Democracy (exiled); Druk National Congress (exiled)
other: Buddhist clergy; ethnic Nepalese organizations leading militant antigovernment campaign; Indian merchant community
Political parties and leadersBhutan Peace and Prosperity Party (Druk Phuensum Tshogpa) or DPT (Jigme THINLEY); Bhutan Kuen-Nyam Party or BNK (Sonam TOBGAY); People's Democratic Party or PDP (Tshering TOBGAY); Druk Nymrub Tshogpa or DNT; Druck Chirwang Tshogpa or DCT
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Government typeconstitutional monarchy
Diplomatic representation in the USnone; note - the Permanent Mission to the UN for Bhutan has consular jurisdiction in the US; the permanent representative to the UN is Kunzang C. NAMGYEL (since February 2014); address: 343 East 43rd Street, New York, NY 10017; telephone (1) (212) 682-2268; FAX (1) (212) 661-0551
consulate(s) general: New York
National anthemname: "Druk tsendhen" (The Thunder Dragon Kingdom)
lyrics/music: Gyaldun Dasho Thinley DORJI/Aku TONGMI
note: adopted 1953
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)thunder dragon known as Druk
Diplomatic representation from the USthe US and Bhutan have no formal diplomatic relations, although frequent informal contact is maintained via the US embasssy in New Delhi (India) and Bhutan's Permanent Mission to the UN