(303,381 sq mi), and the largest wholly or partly within the Southern Hemisphere and Oceania.The eastern half of the island is the major land mass of the independent state of Papua New Guinea.The name Irian, which was originally favored by natives, is now considered to be a name imposed by the authority of Jakarta.
A spine of east–west mountains, the New Guinea Highlands, dominates the geography of New Guinea, stretching over 1,600 km (1,000 mi) from the 'head' to the 'tail' of the island.
Politically, the western half of the island comprises two provinces of Indonesia: Papua and West Papua.
The eastern half forms the mainland of the country of Papua New Guinea (PNG).
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