Vilayets of Hejaz, Asir, Nejd, Yemen

Geography

The Hejaz is bordered by the Red Sea on the West and the Sarawat Mountains on the East. The Hejaz and Asir form a small coastal plain along the Red Sea. The Nejd is mainly a large plateau that covers most of present-day central Saudi Arabia.

Importance, Natural Resources, Manufactured Goods

In the Western Arabian Peninsula the Ottomans controlled the territories of Hejaz, Asir and Eastern Yemen. The Hejaz was important to the Ottomans because as the strongest Muslim Empire felt it their responsibility to take over the administration of the Two Holy Cities of Islam Makkah and Madinah. In the Hejaz was also located the ancient merchant cities of Yanbu and Jeddah. In 1901 the Ottomans built a large railway line from Damascus to Madinah.

Asir was a fertile strip of land surrounded by dry deserts and the sea. The region was a major exporter of fruit to the surrounding dry lands while Western Yemen exported honey and coffee. The Ottomans didn’t have any formal presence in the Nejd but if any tribe seemed to be creating a rebellion they would stop the rebellion right away.

Date Lost:

Hejaz: 1914

Asir: 1912

Najd: 1918

Yemen: 1914

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