The country has an area of 495,755 square miles and a population of 10 million. More than half of the population is Muslim, approximately one-third is Christian, and the remainder follows indigenous religious beliefs or has no religion. Most northerners practice Islam, and most southerners practice Christianity or indigenous religions. However, population patterns are becoming more complex, especially in urban areas.
The majority of Muslims adhere to the Sufi Tijaniyah tradition. A minority of Muslims (5 to 10 percent) hold more fundamentalist beliefs, which in some cases are associated with Wahhabism or Salafism.
Roman Catholics represent the largest Christian religious group. Most Protestants are affiliated with various evangelical Christian groups. Small Baha'i and Jehovah's Witnesses communities also are present.