IntroductionAzerbaijan (äˌzərbĪjänˈ, ăˌzər–) [key], Azeri Azərbaycan, officially Republic of Azerbaijan, republic (2005 est. pop. 7,912,000), 33,428 sq mi (86,579 sq km), in Transcaucasia. Strategically situated at the gateway to SW Asia, Azerbaijan is bounded by Iran on the south, where the Aras (Araks) River divides it from Iranian Azerbaijan; by the Caspian Sea on the east; by Russia's Dagestan Republic on the north; and by Armenia on the west. Bakı (Baku) is the capital; other major cities include Ganja and Sumqayit.
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