The Republic of Vietnam (Vietnamese Việt Nam Cộng Hòa), also known as South Vietnam, was created by the partition of Vietnam in 1954 after the defeat of France at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu. South Vietnam's capital was Saigon and it was ruled by an anti-Communist government alleged by many historians to have been nothing more than an American-backed puppet government and fought with the aid of the US against North Vietnam during the Vietnam War.
Most US forces withdrew from South Vietnam in 1973. No longer able to successfully defend itself, the South Vietnamese government surrendered to North Vietnam and the National Liberation Front (NLF) on April 30, 1975. The Communist Republic of South Vietnam took power and ruled until a unified Socialist Republic of Vietnam was inaugurated on July 2, 1976.