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Al Waseeta: Wikis


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Al Waseeta (also El Wasita) (Arabic سيطة‎الو) was a north African province founded by the pashas of Ottoman Egypt in 1822. Its name derives from the Arabic wasatta meaning 'the middle': a reference to its position between the Black Mountains and the Mediterranean Sea. Although largely over-looked in recorded history (due to its size - 3,690 km sq - and insignificant geo-politics), it represented to many Arabs the hopes and aspirations of post-Ottoman Arab independence. Its short-lived sovereignty in 1898, was secured as a result of Anglo-French inability to agree on its fate. This was largely due to the Fashoda Incident in Sudan, where the two nations were brought to the brink of war with a standoff between armed expeditionary forces. The outcome of these negotiations in Britain's favour contributed to the stabilization of colonial claims and the eventual end of the Scramble for Africa. Essentially, it proved easier to grant Al Waseeta independence than risk bringing the countries back to the brink of war.

Al Waseeta famously enjoyed only 400 days of independence before the assassination of its first and last Amir, Qasim Abdul Rahman. Subsequent events precipitated a civil war and occupation by French troops in 1899.


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