St Kitts-Nevis

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St Kitts-Nevis Self-governing state in the Leeward Islands, West Indies. It includes the islands of St Kitts (St Christopher), Nevis, and Sombrero. Basseterre (on St Kitts) is the capital (2002 est. pop. 11,600). Christopher Columbus discovered the islands in 1493. The English settled in 1623 and the French in 1624. The Treaty of Paris (1783) settled Anglo-French disputes over possession, and the islands gained self-government in 1967. Nevis held a referendum on independence in May 1998. Industries: tourism, sugar, cotton, salt, coconuts. Area: 311sq km (120sq mi). Pop. (2000) 44,000. See West Indies map