The following alphabetical list contains independent countries with a certain arcane property. (The list is complete to the best of my knowledge).

Algeria, Cambodia, Croatia, El Salvador, ????????, Germany, ????????, Serbia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates

Which countries have been replaced by questionmarks?
What is the arcane property?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Is the property uniquely present for this set of countries? $\endgroup$
    – March Ho
    Mar 24, 2015 at 12:37
  • $\begingroup$ The list is complete to the best of my knowledge. $\endgroup$
    – Alexis
    Mar 24, 2015 at 12:47

1 Answer 1


If I'm correct, the "arcane property" is arguable for a number of countries. My best guess at the missing countries:

Equatorial Guinea and Samoa

The "arcane property" seems to be

Countries whose TLD (internet top-level-domain) starts with a different letter than the common English name of the country.

.dz Algeria
.kh Cambodia
.hr Croatia
.sv El Salvador
.gq Equatorial Guinea
.de Germany
.ws Samoa
.rs Serbia
.za South Africa
.es Spain
.lk Sri Lanka
.ch Switzerland
.ae United Arab Emirates

Several other countries could also qualify. For example:

.tl East Timor
.kp North Korea (a.k.a. Democratic People's Republic of Korea) (neither name starts with a "K")


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