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Nauru Geography and History

Nauru, a rock phosphate island in the South Pacific Ocean and the smallest republic of the world covers an area of 21 square kilometers. Geography and history are major aspects of the identity of Nauru. The geography of Nauru is determined by its topographical location in terms of latitude and longitude. The history of Nauru narrates the story of the journey of Nauru from its origin to the present times. Geography and history thus form integral aspects of Nauru's existence.

Geography and history of Nauru depend on its location in the Pacific Ocean and on the fact that it is a phosphate island. Nauru is a part of the Oceania islands that lie south of Marshall Islands. With a coastline of 30km, Nauru is bordered with fertile areas with the center of the island consisting of the phosphate plateau. Nauru is surrounded by coral reefs. It has a tropical climate.

Nauru's history is marked by the coming of the Europeans, colonization of the island followed by the discovery of the phosphate. When the World Wars occurred, Nauru was under the control of Australia, Britain and New Zealand. Nauru became an independent republic in 1968.

Nauru Geography
Nauru Geography presents an interesting picture of this island nation in the South Pacific Ocean. The small island of Nauru is surrounded by water on all sides and does not share land boundary with any other country. The island of Nauru is a part of the Oceania group of islands.

Nauru is located in the south of the Marshall Islands. The islands nearest to Nauru are Banaba in Kiribati and Makatea in French Polynesia. The geography of Nauru is greatly instrumental in defining and influencing the climate of the place. The effect of the ocean renders a cool and moderate climate to Nauru. Tropical climate is the major influence on Nauru. The monsoon is a prolonged period here.

The over utilization of the natural resource, phosphate, threatens the balance of the environment and geography of Nauru. Recently several steps have been taken by the Nauru government to preserve the natural environment of Nauru.

Nauru has a coastline of 30 kilometers. The soil conditions are mainly sandy with high concentration of phosphates. The geographical conditions prevalent in Nauru supports the abundance of fish and phosphates which are the two most important resources of this island.

Nauru History
Characterized with many variations the Nauru history tells the story of the changing face of this small island in Pacific Ocean down the ages. The history of Nauru dates back to the times when the Europeans in Nauru and from that day till the present times Nauru history has meandered through various twists and turns.

Nauru had escaped the control of Europeans for a longer time than its Pacific neighbors due to its isolated location. But in 1798 a British navigator became the first person from Europe to visit Nauru. His footsteps were followed by other Europeans who named the island "Pleasant Island". The Europeans who came to Nauru were mostly whalers and then traders. Nauru's history took a sharp turn when almost 100 years later in 1888 the island got colonized by the Germans. The Berlin Anglo-German Convention was to shape the fate of Nauru in the later years.

Nauru was largely exploited by the Germans especially after the discovery of large amounts of phosphates in the island in 1900 by a British company. There was a significant mark in the history of Nauru. Mining of phosphate began in 1907 and this activity still continues almost uninterrupted. During the First World War Nauru was taken over from German hands by Australia and it came under the domination of Britain.

On becoming a "C" class mandate under the League of Nations Nauru was jointly administered by Australia, New Zealand, Britain and U.K. Nauru had started voicing its opinions on various issues during the 1950s. The United Nations Trusteeship was annulled in 1968 which made Nauru an independent nation with its own government. In 1999 Nauru became a full member of the Commonwealth.