From 1882 until the outbreak of World War I, the German, Austrian-Hungarian, and Italian empires formed the Triple Alliance. The Triple Entente was established to challenge the military might of France, Russia, and the United Kingdom.
After France annexed Italy’s African colonies in the 1870s, it sought military and diplomatic help against France in the shape of the Triple Alliance.
The three nations agreed in May 1882 that Germany and Austria-Hungary would aid Italy if France invaded it without warning.
On the other hand, Italy would help Germany if France invaded but would stay neutral in a conflict between Austria-Hungary and Russia.
After 1882, the Triple Alliance was reconfirmed under significantly altered conditions. The murder of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, at Sarajevo in 1914 prompted Austria-Hungary and Germany to declare war on Russia and France.
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Italy refused to join the war on behalf of its allies, claiming that Austria-Hungary was the aggressor. As a result, the Triple Alliance fell apart. Later, as a member of the Triple Entente, Italy would join the war effort.
The Austro-Hungarian Empire would disintegrate due to its victory at Vittorio Veneto in 1918.