Bookmark and Share

Open the online Arabic language course

Open map of SyriaFlag of SyriaSyria / Flag for the French Mandate of SyriaFrench Mandate
Alawite State
Also known as: Jabal Ansariyah
French: État des Alaouites
Arabic: dawla 'al-¢alawiyīn

Flag of Alawite State.

French stamp used in the Alawite State, with overprint.

Syrian stamp used in the Alawite State, with overprint.
ZOOM - Open a large version of this image

In coastal Syria, state under French control 1923-1936, as defined by the League of Nations.
The state was largely defined to the regions of the Alawites, Arab speakers of the Alawi religion highly distinct from Islam (in 1974, the leader of the Twelver Shi'is, Imam Musa al-Sadr, declares the Alawites a Shi'i sect of the Isma'ili stem). Their identity was unique in Syria, as well as their history over the preceding centuries, paving the ground for the formation of this state.
It was ruled by French governors, the capital was Latakia, and the population at the time about 300,000.
There were several rebellions against the French in the Alawite State, and the most prominent resistance leader Salih al-Ali.

1918: With the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, France takes control of the lands of Lebanon and Syria.
1920 September: Without formal declaration, the lands of the Alawites is governed as independent from the rest of Syria.
1922 July 1: Incorporated into French Syria.
1923 September 29: Declared a state with Latakia as its capital.
1925 January 1: Takes the name Alawite State.
1930 September 22: Renamed Sanjak of Latakia.
1936 December 5: Incorporated into the state of Syria.

By Tore Kjeilen