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(Spice Islands), a group of islands in the eastern Malay Archipelago, in Indonesia, lying between Sulawesi and New Guinea. Area, 83,700 sq km. Population, approximately 1 million (1971, estimate). The Moluccas extend from north to south and southeast for 1,300 km. The largest islands are Halmahera, Ceram, and Buru. The islands are mountainous, with elevations reaching 3,019 m on Mount Binaija in Ceram, and are located in a seismic zone with frequent earthquakes. There are numerous volcanoes, including about ten active ones. Natural resources include deposits of tin, gold, and petroleum.

The climate is equatorial, except in the south, where it is subequatorial. The temperature along the coast fluctuates between 25° and 27°C. The lower slopes receive between 800 mm and 2,000 mm of precipitation annually, and the higher slopes, 4,000 mm or more. Equatorial forests of palms, Ficus, dipterocarps, and bamboo occupy more than 80 percent of the territory, giving way to deciduous and coniferous species above 1,200 m. Thickets of shrubs, tree ferns, and alang-alang grow profusely in the lowlands. The fauna includes both East Asian and Australian species, such as marsupials of the family Phalangeridae, bats, cassowaries, birds of paradise, crocodiles, boas, and tree frogs. Important agricultural products are sago, coconuts, cloves, nutmeg, and pepper. The largest city and port is Ambon on the island of Ambon.


References in periodicals archive ?
T]he Alfuros are described by Wallace as an island people who resemble the people of Papua and New Guinea rather than the Malays" (Batchelor 421n179) This name was given by the Malays to all the non-Islamic peoples in the eastern portion of the Malay Archipelago--in parts of Celebes and the Moluccas.
Since then, the Indonesian Government has worked to end fighting, with the last two armed conflicts in the Molucca Islands and Aceh province ending in 2006.
7 magnitude, issued a tsunami alert via local television and radio after the earthquake hit around six miles under the Molucca Sea, the US Geological Survey said.
On the evidence of Carpenter's previous logs it was clear that the whaling season in the Molucca Passage was short, and would indeed have been over by December, the earliest Carpenter could have returned to his ship.
Funds will be used to provide medical centres and supplies and, in particular, to prevent outbreaks of disease in the internally displaced persons (IDP) camps in West Kalimantan and the Molucca Islands.
This article gives an account of Bruce and Sheridan Fahnestock, who went to Java, Molucca, Banda, and Timor in February 1940.
sent an expedition to Malaya (late 1509); repulsed before Calicut (January 1510), he went on to capture Goa (March); driven out of his new conquest (August) he returned with reinforcements and retook it (November); captured Malacca after a long siege (1511) and sent expeditions into the Molucca Islands; returned to Goa and suppressed a revolt (September 1512); unsuccessfully besieged Aden (1513), he recaptured Ormuz (1515); returning to the Malabar coast, he received orders to return home, and died at sea (December 15, 1515); he was buried at Goa, where his tomb became a local shrine for protection against the rapacity of later governors.
A subject to which I returned in my first podcast, now available on my YouTube channel Molucca Red.
5 on the Richter scale jolted Molucca Sea at 12:05 p.
What name was originally given to the Molucca Islands by Dutch traders?
Some claimed the violence was a spillover from fighting between Christian and Muslim communities in the Molucca Islands to the east.