Caroline, Marshall, And Mariana Islands

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Caroline, Marshall, And Mariana Islands

 

a United Nations trust territory in the Pacific Ocean, under the administration of the United States. It consists of groups of islands in the western Pacific, about 1, 400 islands in all. Area, 1, 800 sq km. Population, 107, 000 (1971). Its administrative center is on the island of Saipan in the Marianas.

The islands were discovered by Europeans in the 16th century. Russian navigators played a significant part in their exploration. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries they were possessions of Germany. In 1914 they were seized by Japan, which received a League of Nations mandate for their administration in 1920. During World War II, after a series of pitched battles in 1944, American armed forces were able to occupy the Marshalls (February), the Marianas (July and August), and the western part of the Carolines (September and October). In 1947 they were constituted as a United Nations trust territory under US administration. Several American military bases are located there.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.