Countries That Changed Their Names

Turkey informed the United Nations in June 2022 that it wishes to be called “Turkiye" in all languages. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a statement said, “The word ‘Turkiye’ represents and expresses the culture, civilisation, and values of the Turkish nation in the best way."

Turkey to Turkiye

The government wants to change the name to bring international focus from certain aspects of national life like recreational drug culture and the red-light district of Amsterdam.

Holland to Netherlands

In April 2016, Czech Republic became Czechia in a move to facilitate the naming of the country at sporting events, and as a part of companies’ marketing efforts.

Czech Republic to Czechia 

The country’s leading military government in 1989 decided to change the country’s name to Myanmar from Burma, in an attempt to protect the way it’s written in the local language.

Burma to Myanmar

Sri Lanka changed its name to break from colonial associations in 1972, when Ceylon was proclaimed a republic and became independent from British rule. In 2011, Sri Lanka officially wiped the old colonial name Ceylon from government use.

Ceylon to Sri Lanka

In 1976, the communist government officially called the country Kampuchea, but after the end of the regime, the country began to be officially called Cambodia. The current name is derived from the Kampuchea, the English transliteration of which is Cambodia. 

Kampuchea to Cambodia

The King of Swaziland, Africa, released a statement in April 2018, stating that the country’s name would be changed to Eswatini. Eswatini means the Land of Swazis, and is just the translation of Swaziland in the local language. Plus, the old name was confusing, as many mistook it for Switzerland. 

Swaziland to Eswatini

The present-day Iran was traditionally known as Persia. However, when Reza Shah became the new king, the country was renamed as Iran in 1935 to signify a new beginning.

Persia to Iran

In 1922, the Irish Free State was created, with Dominion status, following the Anglo-Irish Treaty. However, according to the reports, a new constitution was adopted in 1937, in which it was renamed Ireland, and effectively became a republic, with an elected non-executive president. 

Irish Free State to Ireland

If reports are to go by, Siam’s name was changed to Thailand in 1939 before becoming Siam once more between 1946 and 1948. However, in 1948, the name was changed again to Thailand again, officially as the Kingdom of Thailand, and it has been going by this name ever since. 

Siam to Thailand

In 1971, East Pakistan declared its independence from West Pakistan following a brutal war. This resulted in the creation of the new nation of Bangladesh. The change in name and status reflected the cultural, linguistic, and political differences between the two regions and marked the end of the Bangladesh Liberation War. 

East Pakistan to Bangladesh

In 2019, the Republic of Macedonia officially changed its name to became the Republic of North Macedonia. However, the country said that its citizens should continue to be called “Macedonians,” not “North  Macedonians.”

Republic of Macedonia to Republic of North Macedonia

In 2013, this island registered its name with the UN using the full Portuguese spelling and honouring its nation’s official language. The previous name, as per the records, was a linguistic hybrid, which used ‘cape’ as the English translation of ‘cabo’, but kept the Portuguese word ‘verde’, which means green. 

Cape Verde to Republic of Cabo Verde