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Where did World War I start?

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Quick Answer

World War I arguably began in Sarajevo, as the proximate cause of the conflict was the assassination of the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand by a Serbian nationalist. The killing exacerbated the existing tensions between Austria and Serbia, leading to the first declaration of war.

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Where did World War I start?
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Full Answer

Serbia was under the protection of Russia, which was in a military alliance with Great Britain and France. Austria's declaration of war against Serbia motivated a Russian counter-declaration of war against Austria. Germany then declared war on Russia in support of Austria. The German declaration triggered British and French declarations, and most of Europe's armies mobilized for war.


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    Who was to blame for World War I?

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    According to FirstWorldWar.com, World War I was triggered by the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand of the Austro-Hungarian throne in June 1914 by a Serbian nationalist group. Although the group operated outside of Serbian governmental authority, the country was held responsible for starting the war. Austria-Hungary eventually responded by suppressing the nationalist movement within Serbia and increasing their presence in the Balkans, which resulted in conflict between Russia and Europe.

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