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torstai 9. heinäkuuta 2015

Syria, Cool Facts #44

<= 43. Yemen                                                                                                                  45. Tunisia => 

1. Damascus

The oldest capital city of the world (Rome was destroyed and rebuilt, Damascus was never destroyed)
One of the oldest continuously inhabited cities 
According to the Bible Abraham was born near Damascus
Paul was told to get his awakening on the way to Damascus in the New Testament 
Trade routes to China went from Damascus 

Damascus, world's oldest capital

2. Umayyad Empire

661 The fifth Caliph Muawiya established the Umayyad Dynasty and moved the capital of the Arab realm from Medina to Damascus.
661-750 Umayyad Dynasty created the world's largest Empire ever seen at the time. The Umayyads conquered North Africa, the Iberian Peninsula, Pakistan and Central Asia.
750 The Abbasid Dynasty defeated the Umayyads and moved the capital from Damascus to Baghdad.
During the Abbasid rule, the Umayyad's continued their dynasty's rule in the Iberian Peninsula as the Caliphate of Cordoba until the year 1031.

World's biggest Empires: 

1. British Empire 1922
2. Mongol Empire 1279
3. Russian Empire 1866
4. Spanish Empire 1783-1801
5. Umayyad Empire 661-750

Umayyad Empire, 5th largest Empire of the history

3. Confederations with other Arab countries

Syria has been three times in a confederation with other Arab countries. First it was part of a sovereign state with Egypt under the name of United Arab Republic. The Confederation was led by Egypt and that's why Syria left the Confederation after a military coup in 1961. Then Syria joined another federation with Egypt and Libya. In the end Libya withdrew from it and Sudan joined the federation for a moment but it didn't last.

1958-1961 United Arab Republic: Egypt and Syria
1972-1977 The Federation of Arab Republics: Egypt, Syria and Libya
1977 The Federation of Arab Republics: Egypt, Syria and Sudan

List of Arab Federations

1972 Libya, Egypt and Syria

4. Greater Syria 

Until the end of the First World War, Greater Syria was a region which included the current areas of Syria, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan and part of Turkey. The Hashemites declared the area as Hashemite Kingdom on 1920 but the French started fighting against them defeating the newly proclaimed Arab Kingdom of Syria aborting the Arab state. The area was afterwards partitioned under British and French Mandates into Greater Lebanon, several Syrian states, Mandatory Palestine and Transjordan. The Syrian states unified as the State of Syria and became independent in 1946.

5. Sykes-Picot Agreement

An agreement which was to shape the future of Middle East
Created in 1916 between France and United Kingdom, with the assent of Tsarist Russia
Terms negotiated by Mark Sykes and Francois Georges-Picot
Defined the spheres of influence of France and UK in the Middle East
UK took Palestine, Transjordan and Iraq
France took Syria and Lebanon
Russia was to get Istanbul, the Turkish Straits and the Ottoman Armenian vilayets

Sykes-Picot Agreement 1916


600s BC The Phoenicians control the Mediterranean from the Syrian harbors
400s BC Grand Syria comprises the whole current Middle East
395 As Rome divides, Syria stays as a province of Byzantine Empire
600s Arabs spread Islam and Arabic language to Syria
661 The fifth Caliph Muawiya established the Umayyad Dynasty and moved the capital of the Arab realm from Medina to Damascus, during the Umayyads Arab power spread to North Africa, Iberian Peninsula, Pakistan and Middle Asia
750 The Abbasid Dynasty defeats the Umayyads and moves the capital from Damascus to Bagdad
1187 Syria's Nur ad-Din's warlord Saladin manages to conquer back the Jerusalem Kingdom, which was founded by the European knights
1200s In the end of the century Syria is annexed to Egypt led by the Mamluks
1516 Turkish Ottomans conquer Syria and rule there the following 400 years
1918 The Hashemites together with the British banish the Ottomans from Damascus
1920 Hashim al-Atassi declares the foundation of the Arab Kingdom of Syria, France occupies the country immediately
1922 Syria is divided into 5 protectorates
1936 Syria and French negotiated the treaty of independence which France didn't ratify in the end
1939 Turkey takes the Alexandretta area with the acceptance of the French, Syria still complains about this
1945 Declaration of independence
1948 War between Arabs and Jews
1958 Confederation with Egypt, as the United Arab Republic
1961 Confederation ends in a military coup
1967 and 1973 Arab countries in war against Israel, Syria loses Golan Heights to Israel 
1970 Hafez al-Assad overtakes the power and rules the country until his death in 2000
1972 Syria joins the Federation of Arab Republics with Egypt and Libya
1982 Syrians are sent to Lebanon when Israel attacked Lebanon
2000 Bashar al-Assad starts ruling the country when his father Hafez al-Assad died
2003 USA attacks to Iraq and a million Iraqis flee to Syria
2011 Arab Spring initiated the civil war in Syria


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