Malaysia is a federation consisting of the eleven States of Peninsular Malaysia and the two states of Sabah and Sarawak. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to settle in the area and Malacca became a Portuguese possession in 1541. The Dutch took Malacca in 1641 and held it until 1794 when it was occupied by the British. Although Malacca was returned to the Dutch in 1814, it was finally ceded to Britain in 1824. At the same time (1814–24) Stamford Raffles established a settlement and Singapore became British territory.
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