6,460,000 in Somalia (2002). Population total all countries: 14,679,300.
1 (National). Statutory national language (2004, Transitional Federal Charter, Article 7(1)).
Af-Ashraaf (Ashraaf), Benaadir, Northern Somali. Northern Somali is basis for standard Somali. Readily intelligible to Benaadir Somali speakers, but difficult or unintelligible to most Maay [ymm]. Those in Merka and Muqdisho speak Af-Ashraaf, a distinct variety which may have limited inherent intelligibility of standard Somali.