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The Federation of Gulf States (Arab: اتحاد دول الخليج), is a political association of Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Trucial States and Muscat and Oman. These five states were previously part of the British residency of the Persian Gulf.
Formation of the Gulf States
The riots and political activism of the Egyptian Crisis (1931) and Arab Rebellion of Palestine (1932) forced a review of colonial and protectorate policy in the Middle East. Also the possible expansion of Confederation of Arab States and Iranian influence and troubles in negotiating Iranian oil concessions made it necessary to reorganize British influence in Arabia. The Treaty and Agreement of Friendship and Alliance (1935) established that the UK (and ICF) had control of foreign affairs, security and defense. All responsibilities not granted are the reserved to the Federation, emirates and sultan.
Muscat and Oman joined the Federation in 1936 after being given guaranties of autonomy and British assistance to establish pre-eminence over most of Oman.
As in the former Residency constant advice and encouragement are offered to the various rulers regarding improvement of their administrations and development of their resources, by means of British and Commonwealth advisors.
The Gulf Treaty established a Federal Supreme Council, and Gulf Cooperation Council. The Federal Supreme Council (FSC), chaired by the Chief political resident, is integrated by the sultan and sheiks. Its task is to coordinate all residual powers of the federation (nationality and immigration issues, education, public health, currency, postal, telephone, banking, delimitation of territorial waters and extradition of criminals).
The Gulf Cooperation Council is in charge of implementing the decisions of the FSC and formulate and study other policies. Its members are the state assistants and British and Commonwealth advisors. In 1937 the Gulf Central Bank was established.
Under the terms of the Treaty a Trucial States Council is created as the joint government and representation of the Trucial State.
The Federation is integrated by the following policies:
- Kuwait (capital Kuwait City)
- Bahrain (Manama)
- Qatar (Doha)
- Trucial States (7 emirates, HQ of Resident in Dubai)
- Muscat and Oman (Muscat)
Pearl diving and the pearl industry where the main economic activity of the Gulf States (particularly Bahrain, Trucial States, Qatar and Kuwait). The pearling industry collapsed in the 1930s after the development of cultured pearl methods, especially in Japan.
Since the 1930s all the Arab states of the Persian Gulf have significant revenues from oil and gas. The discovery of oil and gas was one of the reasons to reorganize politically the Gulf states and Oman in one constituent unit. The main gas and oil companies are Anglo-Persian Oil Company (APOC), Kuwait Oil Company (joint venture of APOC and Gulf Oil), Standard Oil Co. (California), Gulf Oil (US), and Iraq Petroleum Company.
Each member stated has keep its armed forces, but coordinated by a Federal Defence Council
The largest one is the Sultan of Oman's Armed Forces (SOAF) consisting of the Royal Army (RAO), Royal Air Force (RAFO) and Royal Navy (RNO). The SOAF was created with advice of the British and staffed with Commonwealth members. the Muscat and Oman Field Force is the main group of the RAO in charge of controlling the interior of Oman. the second largest armed forces is the Kuwait Defence Force, under British and Commonwealth administration. Finally the rest of the forces are: Bahrain Defence Force, Union Defence Force, Trucial Oman Scouts and Qatar Armed Forces