The southernmost area of the Caucasus. Long under a vague Turkish suzerainty, Armenia was conquered by the Russians during the 19th century. During World War I, Armenia was occupied by Turkish and German forces. Between May 1918 and December 1920, and again between February and April 1921, it existed as an independent republic, issuing its own stamps.
In 1923, it joined the Transcaucasian
Federation of Soviet Republics. Transcaucasian issues were soon
superseded by those of the Soviet Union. With the breakup of the Soviet
Union, Armenia again became an independent republic. A long-standing
dispute with neighboring Azerbaijan over the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh,
a territory completely encircled by Moslem Azerbaijan but populated
mostly by Christian Armenians, has led to hostilities between the two
countries in recent years.