Qatar is a state (emirate) in the Middle East, located on the
Qatar Peninsula in the eastern part of the Arabian Peninsula.
It borders on Saudi Arabia in the south, on all other sides it is washed by the Persian Gulf. In the northwest it has a sea border with the islands of Bahrain, in the southeast - a sea border with the United Arab Emirates. Doha is the capital, seat of government and home to major commercial and financial institutions. More than half of the country's population lives there. The city is also considered a major cultural center with various museums and educational centers.
Qatar is the third in terms of natural gas reserves, the sixth exporter of natural gas and a major exporter of oil and petroleum products (21st in the world). Since 1961, he was a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, but on January 1, 2019 he left it.
According to E.M. Pospelov, the state and the peninsula of Qatar were named after the village of Kadaru, which existed in ancient times on this peninsula.
Almost the entire territory of the country, located on the peninsula, is a desert. In the north there is a low sandy plain with rare oases, covered with moving (eolian) sands; in the middle part of the peninsula there is a rocky desert with patches of solonchaks; in the south are high sandy hills. There are several protected areas in Qatar, including the Umm Tais National Park.
The land mainly consists of rocky plains covered with a series of low limestone outcrops such as Jabal Dukhan and Jabal Fuwayrit.
Qatar has a dry, subtropical desert climate with low annual rainfall and hot, humid summers. In winter, the amount of precipitation is minimal and on average does not exceed 75.2 mm per year. In summer the temperature fluctuates from 25 to 46 degrees.
The peninsula is poor in water. There are no permanent rivers. Most of the water has to be obtained by sea desalination. Underground sources of fresh water and oases are located mainly in the north. The animal world is poor, reptiles and rodents predominate.
According to archaeological evidence, excavations, inscriptions
and a few pottery found in various parts of the country, the
settlement of the Qatari Peninsula dates back to almost four
thousand years BC.
In the 5th century BC, the Greek historian Herodotus mentioned that the first inhabitants of Qatar were the Canaanite tribes, known for their seafaring and maritime trade. In addition, the so-called Map of Arabia by the Greek geographer Ptolemy included what Ptolemy himself then called "Katra", which is believed to be a reference to the city of Ez-Zubara, which was formerly one of the most important trading ports in the Persian Gulf region. .
The people of Qatar participated in the preparation of the first navy to transport armies during the Muslim conquests.
Under Abbasid rule in the 14th century AD, Qatar witnessed a period of economic prosperity, as evidenced by written records found at Marub Fort on the west coast, representing the architectural character of the Abbasids.
After their military alliance with the Turks in the 16th century AD, the Qataris were able to drive out the Portuguese, and this was the start of Ottoman rule over the entire Arabian Peninsula, including Qatar, for about four centuries in a row. Turkish rule in the region, however, waned with the outbreak of World War I in 1914, and in 1916 a treaty was concluded with Britain providing for the protection of the Qatari lands and people. British power was limited mainly to the supervision of some administrative affairs.
Qatar was ruled by the Al Thani dynasty in honor of its leader Thani bin Mohammed - the father of Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani, who later became the first sheikh to have actual power over the Qatari Peninsula in the middle of the nineteenth century.
Descendants of the Banu Tamim tribe, whose lineage goes back to Mudhar bin Nizar, the Al Thani settled in the Jibrin oasis in southern Najd before moving to the north of the Qatari peninsula. They then moved to Doha in the mid-nineteenth century under Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani.
The chronology of the modern history of Qatar begins in the eighteenth century, when all the tribes gathered under the rule of the Al Thani family. This paved the way for greater stability in the country, independence from neighboring countries and the establishment of balanced relations with various influential parties in the region.
In 1868, Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani signed an agreement with the British authorities in the Persian Gulf, recognizing Qatar as an independent political entity. By virtue of this agreement, Britain promised to defend Qatar from any external aggression.
In the last quarter of the nineteenth century, Qatar was under the control of the Ottoman Empire. Qatar maintained ties with the Caliphate state under the rule of Sheikh Jasim bin Mohammed Al Thani, despite differences of opinion on some issues, until his death (July 17, 1913) and the outbreak of the First World War.
In 1916, Sheikh Abdullah bin Jasim Al Thani signed the Anglo-Qatari treaty of 11 articles, while making a reservation to three of these articles, which, in his opinion, encroach on national sovereignty. This:
Article 7 allowing British citizens to compete with locals in the pearl trade;
article 8 providing for the appointment of a British political resident in Qatar;
Article 9, allowing Great Britain to open a post and telegraph office in the country.
In Articles 2, 10 and 11, Great Britain pledged to defend Qatar against all maritime aggression and against foreign interference in its internal affairs.
Sheikh Abdullah extended this treaty in 1935 and the first oil exploration concession in Qatar was signed with the Anglo-Persian Oil Company. In addition, he agreed to the appointment of a British political resident in Qatar, although this did not occur until 1949, making Qatar the last Gulf state to agree to the move.
The first oil production took place at the end of 1939, but exploration work was stopped during World War II. This coincided with the decline of the pearling industry and the decline in the market for natural pearls, which led to worsening economic conditions. The situation began to change in the early 1950s, when the influence of oil exports began to show in Qatar.
In the 1960s, Qatar managed to participate in international events by joining such UN organizations as UNESCO and the World Health Organization (WHO); participation in conferences of oil-producing countries.
In January 1968, the British government withdrew its troops from the east of Suez, thus ending the era of the protectorate of the rulers of the Arab states of the Persian Gulf.
Sheikh Ahmad bin Ali Al Thani, who then ruled Qatar, issued Decree No. (11) of 1969 establishing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which later became the nucleus of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Qatar.
The first Constitution of Qatar was ratified in April 1970 in the form of an Interim Basic Statute which provided for the formation of the first Council of Ministers. Accordingly, Decree No. (35) of May 29, 1970 was issued to form the Cabinet of Ministers and determine the powers of its ministers and the functions of other public bodies, as provided for in the Statute.
The Cabinet of Ministers, consisting of ten ministerial portfolios, met for the first time on June 3, 1970.
On September 3, 1971, Sheikh Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani, then heir to the throne and prime minister, announced the termination of the 1916 Treaty, heralding a new stage in the country's history when the government took the reins of power and proclaimed Qatar an independent state.
In 2022, Qatar hosted the 22nd FIFA World Cup.
Qatar is an absolute monarchy.
The state structure of Qatar includes ministries, high councils and other state institutions. Qatar's public administration institutions are developing rapidly and are striving to meet the needs of citizens and institutional service clients. About 90,000 employees, including Qataris and foreigners, work for the government and other public sector institutions.
The system of government in Qatar is based on the separation and cooperation of powers. Executive power is vested in the emir and heir apparent, assisted by the Council of Ministers as provided by the Constitution, while legislative power is vested in the Consultative Council.
The emir is the head of state and represents the country within the country, abroad and in all international relations. He is also Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, which he directs with the assistance of the Defense Council, which is under his direct authority. Judicial power belongs to the courts of general jurisdiction; and judgments are proclaimed in the name of the emir.
The Emir is assisted by a Council of Ministers or cabinet, a prime minister and six higher councils. The emir appoints the prime minister and ministers, accepts their resignation and releases them from their positions by decrees of the emir. He assigns the tasks of each ministry to a minister or prime minister in accordance with the emir's decree of appointment.
The Prime Minister presides over the meetings of the Council of Ministers and oversees the coordination of work between the various ministries in order to achieve unity and integration of all branches of government. He also signs the Council's decisions.
The Cabinet is formed by decree of the Emir at the suggestion of the Prime Minister. The duties and powers of ministers and government departments are determined in accordance with the law. The Council of Ministers, being the highest executive body in the country, is authorized to control all internal and external affairs within its competence in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and the law.
Ministries and other government agencies are responsible for the implementation of government policies and programs related to them.
Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani took up his duties as Emir of the State of Qatar on June 25, 2013 after the announcement by his father, Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, of the decision to transfer his power to his heir.
In Qatar, the creation of political parties, trade unions, and demonstrations are prohibited.