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The Triple Entente (Russian: Тройственная Антанта, romanizedTroystvennaya Antanta, from French entente [ɑ̃tɑ̃t] meaning "friendship, understanding, agreement") describes the informal understanding between the Russian Empire, the French Third Republic and Great Britain. It built upon the Franco-Russian Alliance of 1894, the Entente Cordiale of 1904 between Paris and London, and the Anglo-Russian Entente of 1907. It formed a powerful counterweight to the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy. The Triple Entente, unlike the Triple Alliance or the Franco-Russian Alliance itself, was not an alliance of mutual defense.

The Franco-Japanese Treaty of 1907 was a key part of building a coalition as France took the lead in creating alliances with Japan, Russia, and (informally) with Britain. Japan wanted to raise a loan in Paris, so France made the loan contingent on a Russo-Japanese agreement and a Japanese guaranty for France's strategically vulnerable possessions in Indochina. Britain encouraged the Russo-Japanese rapprochement. Thus was built the Triple Entente coalition that fought World War I.[1]

At the start of World War I in 1914, all three Triple Entente members entered it as Allied Powers against the Central Powers: Germany and Austria-Hungary.[2] On September 4, 1914, the Triple Entente issued a declaration undertaking not to conclude a separate peace and only to demand terms of peace agreed between the three parties.[3] Historians continue to debate the importance of the alliance system as one of the causes of World War I.

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