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date: 22 August 2019

Arabian Gulflocked

  • Poul Rovsing Olsen
  • , revised by Ulrich Wegner


Region encompassing south-eastern Iraq, Republic of , Kuwait, the Hasa province of Saudi Arabia, Kingdom of , Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the southern coast of Iran . Since prehistoric times, the Arabian (or Persian) Gulf has been an important link on the trade routes between East Africa, the Mediterranean, India and East Asia. The population is predominantly Arab, except in Iran. Until the 20th century, Gulf Arabs were nomads, pearl-divers and – to some extent – fishermen, shipbuilders and merchants. Since World War II, wealth from the region's abundant oil resources has attracted many foreigners to the area, mostly from other Arab countries.

Since ancient times, many non-Arab minority groups have settled in the region. Some have roots in East Africa and eastern parts of Central Africa; they are often (but not always) descendants of freed slaves. A fairly large Persian group lives in Qatar and Bahrain, and many Baluchis may be found in the United Arab Emirates, where UAE citizens represent less than 20% of the population. In the Emirates and Bahrain, Indians and Pakistanis are doctors, tailors and bankers. This demographic diversity is reflected in the variety of the music in the Gulf area....

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Journal of the International Folk Music Council