The Armenian homeland fell under Turkish rule from the 16th century and with the decline of the Ottomans was divided among Turkey, Iran, and Russia. In 1915 the Turks forcibly deported 1,750,000 Armenians to the deserts of Syria and Mesopotamia; more than 600,000 were killed or died on forced marches. Russian Armenia was absorbed into the former Soviet Union in 1922 and gained independence as a member of the Commonwealth of Independent States in 1991. Since 1988 there has been conflict with neighboring Azerbaijan over the ethnically Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh and the predominantly Azerbaijani territory of Naxçivan
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