For period 1940-1991 see Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
A republic in northern Europe bordering on the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Finland. Estonia was for centuries a Swedish possession. Conquered by Russia in 1721, it was under Russian rule until 1917, when it became independent. In 1939, Soviet forces occupied the country, absorbing it in 1940. Occupied by Germany from 1941-44 and administered as part of Ostland, Estonia was re-occupied by the Soviet Union. after World War II. In 1990, Estonia declared itself an "occupied nation" and on August 20, 1991, declared its independence. Russia accepted Estonia's declaration in September, and the last Russian troops were withdrawn in 1994.