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Dutch East Indies

The Dutch East Indies, or Netherlands East Indies, was the name of Indonesia under the administration of the Netherlands. From the early 1600s, the Dutch East India Company had been the dominant power in the archipelago.

After the Dutch East India Company was liquidated in 1799, and after a British interregnum during the Napoleonic Wars, the Dutch government took over administration until the independence of Indonesia in 1949 following the Indonesian National Revolution. On January 11, 1942 Japan declared war on the Netherlands and invaded the Netherlands East Indies.

Sukarno proclaimed the East Indies independent in 1945, but the Netherlands successfully tried to thwart it in two wars until UN and other diplomatic pressure affected the outcomes. These were euphemistically called "police actions" in an eventually unsuccessful attempt to bypass UN restrictions.

The Dutch retained sovereignty over Netherlands New Guinea, the west side of the island of New Guinea or West Papua until 1962, when US and UN diplomatic pressure again caused a change.

The capital of the Dutch East Indies was Batavia, now known as Jakarta.



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