Sitra

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Sitra
المنامة As Sitra
Women taking part in a pro-democracy sit-in in Sitra
Women taking part in a pro-democracy sit-in in Sitra
Sitra (Sitrah), east of Manama, in Bahrain
Sitra (Sitrah), east of Manama, in Bahrain
Coordinates: 26°09′14″N 50°37′09″E / 26.15389°N 50.61917°E / 26.15389; 50.61917Coordinates: 26°09′14″N 50°37′09″E / 26.15389°N 50.61917°E / 26.15389; 50.61917
Country Bahrain
Governorate Central
Population
 • Total 40,000

Sitra (Arabic: سترة‎ or Arabic: سِتْرَة‎,[1] also: As Sitra,[2] Jazīrat Sitrah[3] and Jazīrat as Sitra[4]) is an island in the Central Governorate of Bahrain, just east of Bahrain Island in Persian Gulf. It lies south of Manama and Nabih Saleh. The island's western coast forms the boundary of Tubli Bay.

Most of the inhabitants of the island live in seven historic villages: Wadyan, Al Kharijiya, Marquban, Al Garrya, Mahazza, Sufala, and Abul Aish. The population is almost entirely Bahrani Shia Muslim, however some Indians and Pakistanis also live in the island.

Geography and economy[edit]

The island used to be covered in date palm groves and farms, watered by several freshwater springs, and the island's economy used to be based on agriculture and fishing. Mangroves used to line the western coast, however they have almost disappeared due to development.

The northern section of the island has been turned into an industrial area. Bapco oil storage reservoirs are located in the south. Sitra is also the terminus of the 42-km Dhahran-Sitra natural gas pipeline, which connects it to Dahran in Saudi Arabia.[5]

Several car and furniture showrooms also make up the new development on the island.

The Sitra Causeway connects the north of the island to Nabih Saleh and to Umm al Hussam (Manama) on Bahrain Island. A small bridge on the south west of the Sitra also joins Bahrain Island, near the villages of Ma'ameer and Eker.

The Sitra Club is a cultural and sports club for the island. Also, Sitra is the site of many school campuses such as Al Noor International School and Indian School, Bahrain.

History[edit]

The Sitra incident[edit]

Bapco Bahrain oil reservoirs in Sitra
Berth number 4 in Sitra Wharf in 1940.

One of the many incidents that happened in Sitra is called the "Sitra incident", which happened during the 200 year reign of the Uyunids who came from Al-Hasa and whom belong to the Bani Abdulqays tribe. They invaded the Bahrain islands in 1076 CE and ruled it until the year 1235. The Sitra incident happened because of King Kilzar bin Qays's greed in the annexation of Bahrain to his kingdom. From here the power struggle between the king and the rest of the Uyunids began, where many of the loyalists were killed by rebellious Uyunids. This incident was recorded by one of the Uyunids, Ali bin al Mugrab Al Uyuni.[6]

Conflict with Al Khalifa[edit]

In 1782, a conflict occurred between locals and a number of Al Khalifa who came from Zubara to buy supplies. The clashes resulted in deaths from both sides.[7] Large numbers of the Khalifa were killed including their convoy leader.[citation needed]

Sitra in the 1990s uprising[edit]

Sitra was a centre of unrest during the 1990s Bahraini uprising. Security forces killed five civilians from the island:

  • 1. Hussain Al Safi, from Sufala
  • 2. Ali Tahir, from Al Kharijiya
  • 3. Mohammad Alsayyah, from Wadyan
  • 4. Zahra Al Tog, from Wadyan
  • 5. Yasser Sudaif, from Wadyan

Sitra in the 2011–present uprising[edit]

During the current Bahraini uprising, Sitra have also known to be very rebellious. One security officer was run over by a car and many were injured by local residents using Molotov cocktails.

Sitra is labeled by the opposition as the "Capital of the Revolution", due to Sitra being the place where most of the deaths in the uprising occurred and being the hometown of most of the people killed during the uprising.

Some of the people killed by security forces that in Sitra or who were originally from Sitra are:

  • 1. Ali Khudair, killed in the Pearl Roundabout on February 17, 2011 (See Bloody Thursday)
  • 2. Ali Al-Mumin, killed in the Pearl Roundabout on February 17, 2011 (See Bloody Thursday)
  • 3. Mahmood Abutaki, killed in the Pearl Roundabout on February 17, 2011 (See Bloody Thursday)
  • 4. Ahmad Farhan, killed on March 15, 2011 during the Sitra Massacre
  • 5. Isa Radhi, killed on March 15, 2011 during the Sitra Massacre
  • 6. Mohammad Abdulhussain Farhan, killed on April 30, 2011 in Mahazza
  • 7. Zainab Al Juma, killed on July 15, 2011 in Mahazza
  • 8. Isa Altaweel, killed on July 31, 2011 in Algarrya
  • 9. Ali Jawad al-Sheikh, killed on August 31, 2011 on the first day of Eid
  • 10. Sayyid Jawad Marhoon, killed on September 14, 2011 in Al Kharijiya
  • 11. Ali Baddah, killed on November 19, 2011 in Ghuraifa, buried in his hometown of Sitra
  • 12. Sayyid Hashem Saeed Al-Mumin killed on December 31, 2011, lived in Hamad Town but died in his hometown of Sitra
  • 13. Mohammad Ibrahim Yacoob, died on January 26, 2012
  • 14. Mansoor Salman, killed on February 19, 2012, the oldest person to die in the uprising. He was 85 years old.

Sitra Municipality[edit]

Map of Bahrain showing Sitrah municipality

Sitra was also the name of a municipality in Bahrain before they were re-organized as governorates. The Sitra Municipality consisted of the island of Sitra and three villages close to it on the main island of Bahrain: Ma'ameer, Eker and Nuwaidrat.[8]

The area covered by Sitra Municipality handles Bahrain's entire petroleum production. It is also the export centre for the oil fields in northeastern Saudi Arabia. [9]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "سِتْرَة: Bahrain, name, administrative division, geographic coordinates and map". Geographical Names. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  2. ^ "As Sitra: Bahrain, name, administrative division, geographic coordinates and map". Geographical Names. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  3. ^ "Jazīrat Sitrah: Bahrain, name, administrative division, geographic coordinates and map". Geographical Names. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  4. ^ "Jazīrat as Sitra: Bahrain, name, administrative division, geographic coordinates and map". Geographical Names. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  5. ^ "Middle East Pipelines map - Crude Oil (petroleum) pipelines - Natural Gas pipelines - Products pipelines". Theodora.com/pipelines. Retrieved 2011-03-06. 
  6. ^ ابن المقرب العيوني "ويوم سترة منا كان صاحبه لاقت سامة و الحاسك الرقما"
  7. ^ (Arabic) "Summary of Baharain and Baharna's history", Al Jareesh, Retrieved 4 April 2012
  8. ^ "Directory of Cities and Towns in Sitrah, Bahrain". Falling Rain. Archived from the original on 2007-05-26. Retrieved 2007-07-16. 
  9. ^ "Sitrah". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2007-07-16.