Nauru is the third-smallest country in the world, larger than only Vatican City and Monaco, making it the smallest republic and island nation, as well the smallest member state of the Commonwealth of Nations by area.

Its population of about 10,800 is the world’s third-smallest (not including colonies or overseas territories) larger than only Vatican City and Tuvalu.

Settled by people from Micronesia circa 1000 BCE, Nauru was annexed and claimed as a colony by the German Empire in the late 19th century. After World War I, Nauru became a League of Nations mandate administered by Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. During World War II, Nauru was occupied by Japanese troops, and was bypassed by the Allied advance across the Pacific. After the war ended, the country entered into United Nations trusteeship. Nauru gained its independence in 1968.

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