High Quality Content by WIKIPEDIA articles! Nauru, officially the Republic of Nauru and formerly known as Pleasant Island, is an island nation in Micronesia in the South Pacific. Its nearest neighbor is Banaba Island in Kiribati, 300 km to the east. Nauru is the world's smallest island nation, covering just 21 square kilometres (8.1 square miles). Settled by Micronesian and Polynesian people, 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 who were bypassed by the Allied advance across the Pacific, and after the war ended, it entered into trusteeship again. Nauru was declared independent in 1968. von Surhone, Lambert M.