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Qatar Independence Day – December 18, 2022

Qatar Independence Day, also known as Qatar National Day, is celebrated each year in the country on December 18. You may also know Qatar Independence Day as Founder’s Day. The day commemorates the unification of Qatar in 1878. The day also commemorates the succession of Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani, the son of Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani, the ruler of Qatar. Today is a national holiday with schools and offices remaining shut. If the day falls on a Friday or Saturday, then businesses and schools are granted permission to remain shut on Sunday too.

History of Qatar Independence Day

Qatar was not always as developed as it is now. The country had started to develop into an important settlement only in the 18th century. The country saw brief periods of control from various local regions, including the British. In 1871, the Ottoman Empire arrived at the request of the Emir. On December 18, 1878, Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani, succeeded his father, Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani, to become the ruler of Qatar. He was the first Emir in his lineage to rule Qatar to this day.

Sheikh Al Thani ruled Qatar until he died in 1913. The former ruler is revered as the founder of Qatar. It was during his rule that he unified the tribes of the peninsula to create the modern state of Qatar. His leadership, both political and military, defined Qatar’s status as a nation. Qatar emerged as a formidable power despite the two key powers in the region at that time — the Ottomans and the British.

During the First World War, the Ottoman Empire fell apart after losing key battles. Qatar participated in the Arab uprising against the Ottoman Empire. This resulted in the Ottomans losing face and leaving Doha in 1915. In 1916, Qatar became a British protectorate and, on September 3, 1971, became an independent nation again. September 3 was originally celebrated as Qatar National Day. Qatar Independence Day was established on June 21, 2007, by decree of the Emir and Heir Apparent, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani.

Qatar Independence Day timeline

1825
The House of Thani

Sheikh Mohammed bin Thani is the first leader.

1949
Oil Exports Begin

This becomes the country’s main source of income.

2017
Qatar is Isolated

The neighboring countries cut off ties because of Qatar’s alleged relations with extremists.

2022
The FIFA World Cup

The first country in the Middle East to host the FIFA world cup.

Qatar Independence Day FAQs

How did Qatar become rich?

Oil exports started in 1949, and oil reserves quickly became the country’s primary source of income. These revenues were used to fund the expansion and modernization of Qatar’s infrastructure.

Why should people visit Qatar?

The country provides a unique combination of tradition and modernity that is hard to find somewhere else in the world.

What language is spoken in Qatar?

Arabic and English are spoken in Qatar.

Qatar Independence Day Activities

  1. Wish your friends from Qatar

    If you have friends from Qatar or friends that live in Qatar, do not forget to wish them on Qatar Independence Day. The national holiday is a source of pride and they would appreciate the gesture.

  2. Visit Qatar

    With its ultra-modern infrastructure and age-old cultural traditions, Qatar is a unique tourist destination. Celebrate Qatar Independence Day by booking a holiday to visit the country.

  3. Attend celebrations

    If you are aware of any Qatar Independence Day celebrations around you, don’t forget to attend the event. The day is celebrated with gorgeous displays of fireworks, cultural events, and sports competitions.

5 Facts About Modern-Day Qatar

  1. It’s very modernized

    99% of Qataris live in a city.

  2. Natives are a minority

    60% of the Qatari population is made up of expatriates.

  3. There is hardly any rain

    The country receives, at most, only 10 days of rainfall annually.

  4. It can get very hot

    During peak summertime, the temperature might go as high as 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

  5. The 6th richest country in the world

    And richest in the Middle East.

Why We Love Qatar Independence Day

  1. The perfect confluence of traditional and modern

    Qatar is often held as the perfect confluence of the traditional and modern. Qatar Independence Day is a celebration of this delicate balance where both the past and future are embraced.

  2. Crucial to the global economy

    Rich in fossil fuels, Qatar exports fuels to many countries across the world. Qatar Independence Day acknowledges the crucial role that the country places in keeping the economy alive.

  3. We adore Qatar

    Qatar is a fabulous tourist hotspot and the people are well-known for their hospitality and generosity. Qatar Independence Day is a celebration of Qatar and its people.

Qatar Independence Day dates

YearDateDay
2022December 18Sunday
2023December 18Monday
2024December 18Wednesday
2025December 18Thursday
2026December 18Friday

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