East Africa or Eastern Africa is the easterly region of the African continent, variably defined by geography or geopolitics. In the UN scheme of geographic regions, 20 territories constitute Eastern Africa:
- Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi – comprise the African Great Lakes region and are members of the East African Community (EAC). Burundi and Rwanda are sometimes considered part of Central Africa.
- Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia – collectively known as the Horn of Africa.
- Mozambique and Madagascar – often considered part of Southern Africa. Madagascar has close cultural ties to Southeast Asia and the islands of the Indian Ocean.
- Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe – often included in Southern Africa, and formerly of the Central African Federation.
- Comoros, Mauritius and Seychelles – small island nations in the Indian Ocean.
- Réunion and Mayotte – French overseas territories also in the Indian Ocean.
- South Sudan – newly independent from Sudan.
Due to colonial territories of the British East Africa Protectorate and German East Africa, the term East Africa is often (especially in the English language ) used to specifically refer to the area now comprising the three countries of Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
However, this has never been the convention in many other languages, where the term generally had a wider, strictly geographic context and therefore typically included Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan.