Jabal Druze State

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Jabal al-Druze
جبل الدروز
Mandate of France

1921–1936


Flag

Location of Jabal al-Druze (turquoise-blue at bottom)
in the Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon.
Capital As-Suwayda
Languages Arabic
French
Religion Druze
Political structure League of Nations Mandate
Governor
 -  1921–1923 Prince Salim Basha al-Atrash
 -  1925–1936 Tarit
Historical era Interwar period
 -  Established 1921
 -  Named "State of Souaida" 4 March 1922
 -  Named "Jabal al-Druze" 1927
 -  Disestablished 1936

Jabal al-Druze (Arabic: جبل الدروز‎, French: Djebel Druze) was an autonomous state in the French Mandate of Syria from 1921 to 1936, designed to function as a government for the local Druze population under French oversight.

Nomenclature[edit]

Geographic map of Jabal al-Druze.

On March 4, 1922, it was proclaimed as the State of Souaida, after the capital As-Suwayda, but in 1927 it was renamed Jabal al-Druze or Jabal Druze State. The name comes from the Jabal al-Druze mountain.

History[edit]

Druze celebrating their independence in 1925.

The Druze state was formed on May 1, 1921, in former Ottoman territory, while other statelets were installed in other parts of the Syrian mandate (e.g. the Alawite State in the Lattakia region). Jabal al-Druze was home to about 50,000 Druze. It was the first, and remains the only, autonomous entity to be populated and governed by Druze. The 1925 Syrian Revolution began in Jabal al-Druze under the leadership of Sultan al-Atrash, and quickly spread to Damascus and other non-Druze areas outside the Jabal al-Druze region. Protests against the division of Syrian territory into statelets were a main theme of Syrian anti-colonial nationalism, which eventually won the victory to reunite the entire French-mandated territory, except Lebanon (which had become independent) and Alexandretta, which was annexed to Turkey as the Hatay Province. As a result of nationalist pressure, under the Franco-Syrian Treaty of 1936, Jabal al-Druze ceased to exist as an autonomous entity and was incorporated into Syria.

Population[edit]

General Distribution of Population in the State of Aleppo according to the French census in 1921-22[1]
Religion Inhabitants Percentage
Sunni 700 1,4%
Druze 43,000 84,8%
Christians 7,000 13,8%
Total 50,700 100%

Governors[edit]

  • Amir Salim Pasha al-Atrash (May 1, 1921 - September 15, 1923)
  • Trenga (provisional) (September 1923 - March 6, 1924)
  • Gabriel Marie Victor Carbillet (March 6, 1924 - October 14, 1925), provisional to October 1, 1924
  • Sultan Pasha al-Atrash (July 18, 1925 - June 1, 1927), chief of state; in dissidence
  • Charles Andréa (October 15, 1925–1927)
  • Marie Joseph Léon Augustin Henry (1927)
  • Abel Jean Ernest Clément-Grancourt (1927–1932)
  • Renaud Massiet (February 3, 1932 - January 28, 1934)
  • Devicq (1934–1935)
  • Tarit (1935 - December 2, 1936)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ E.J. Brill's first encyclopaedia of Islam, 1913-1936, Volume 2, page 301

External links[edit]

  • Syria at WorldStatesmen.org.
  • Map at unimaps.com.