Qasimi Family of Raʾs al-Khayma, al-

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Ruling family of Ra ʾs al-Khayma in the United Arab Emirates.

Humayd ibn Abdullah al-Qasimi ruled Raʾs alKhayma between 1869 and 1900, when the emirate rejoined with Sharjah and was ruled by another branch of the family. In 1921 Sultan ibn Salim alQasimi seized control of the emirate from his nephew, Muhammad bin Salim al-Qasimi, and Raʾs al-Khayma once again separated from Sharjah, causing lingering resentment between the two branches of the family. In the 1940s Muhammad and his relatives charged that the sultan was not distributing revenues from oil companies in an equitable manner. When the sultan was out of the country, Muhammad's second-oldest son, Saqr, captured the amir's fort in the capital and was thereafter recognized by local elites and by the British as ruler. Because of his strength of will and independent-mindedness Saqr ran afoul of British officials and other rulers. In the 1960s he was a strong advocate of Arab nationalist causes and of the involvement of Egypt and other countries in the affairs of the emirates. He also was reluctant at first to bring Raʾs al-Khayma into the UAE's federation. The heir apparent is his son Khalid, who was educated in the United States.

see also raʾs al-khayma; trucial coast; united arab emirates.


Anthony, John Duke. Arab States of the Lower Gulf: People, Politics, Petroleum. Washington, DC: Middle East Institute, 1975.

Peck, Malcolm C. Historical Dictionary of the Arab Gulf States. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1997.

anthony b. toth