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1. Geography
2. Political situation
a. Rulers
3. Defense
4. Economy
a. Figures
5. Health
6. Education
a. Universities
7. Media
8. Demographics
9. Religions
a. Freedom
10. Peoples
11. Languages
12. Human rights
13. History
14. Cities and Towns

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Open map of KuwaitFlag of KuwaitKuwait /

Civilization is traced back to 3rd millennium BCE.
3rd century BCE: Greeks colonize the island Faylaka.
1710 CE: The traditionally counted foundation of Kuwait, when the city of Kuwait was established by immigrants (Aniza) from the Arabian peninsula.
1756: The Sabah dynasty is established with a shaykh as the leader. The shaykhdom is nominally under Ottoman rule, but has de facto independence.
1899: When the Ottoman empire tries to take control over the shaykhdom with German aid, the shaykh asks for British assistance and protection, which he gets.
1914: Britain recognize the independence of Kuwait. Wahhabis of Najd in Arabia attack Kuwait after this.
1921: Peace between Kuwait and the Wahhabis is restored, after the British gave aid to Kuwait.
1922: Neutral zone established between Kuwait and Arabia.
1923: Borders between Iraq and Kuwait are drawn on the map.
1938: Petroleum is discovered.
1946: Gulf Oil Corporation, British and US owned, starts extraction of oil.
1951: The Kuwaiti shyakh gets control of half of the oil revenues, money that were used for developing the infrastructure and welfare services.
1961 June 19: End of British protection, the shaykh changes his title to emir.
— Kuwait joins the Arab League. Iraq objects strongly to this and claims that Kuwait is part of their territory.
December: An assembly is set down to draft a constitution.
1963 January: The constitution is proclaimed. According to this, the emir has the executive power, organized with a group of ministers.
January 23: A national assembly is elected.
October: Iraq gives up its claim on Kuwait.
1966: Saudi Arabia and Kuwait agree upon borders, and the neutral zone is dropped. The two countries also agree upon cooperation in exploitation of oil reserves in the border area.
1973: Rise in oil prices has tremendous positive effects on Kuwaiti economics.
1975: The Kuwaiti governments take full control over the revenues from the Kuwait Oil Company, as it had been renamed.
1976 August: The emir dissolves the national assembly.
1977: Shaykh Jabir al-Ahmad al-Sabah becomes new emir.
1981 February: A new assembly is elected.
Iran bombs Kuwaiti oil installations as a revenge to Kuwaiti aid to Iraq in their warfare against Iran. Shi'is living inside Kuwait participate in many destabilizing actions.
1985: Expulsions of foreign workers, mainly Shi'is, after political and violent actions from Shi'i groups. Most serious was an attempt on the emir's life. This year and the next, altogether 27,000 people have to leave.
1986 July: The national assembly is once again dissolved by the emir, as it had been criticized cabinet members.
1987: Military help is sent from the USA and the Soviet Union to protect Kuwait from Iranian attacks.
1989: Public protests against the suppression of the national assembly.
1990 June 10: Elections for a new assembly. This is boycotted by the opposition that consider it inferior to what the constitution calls for.
August 2: Iraqi invasion, with 100,000 troops. The Iraqis soon take control of the country. A period of harsh suppression starts together with looting of the country. Many from the large community of Palestinian foreign workers help the Iraqis. Emir Jabaru l-Ahmad escapes to the USA.
August 8: Kuwait is annexed by Iraq. Few countries around the world recognize this, PLO is one of the few. The Arab League condemns it, as well as the UN.
1991 January 16: After months of warnings, a coalition of 28 countries attack Iraqi-occupied Kuwait, and has fast victories.
February 26: Kuwait is liberated. Kuwait's infrastructure is severely damaged, food and supplies scarce. Hundreds of oil-wells have been put to fire, and it takes many months before the last fire is put out.
March 14: The emir returns, martial law is imposed until June 26.
— Kuwait and USA signs a 10 year security pact.
1992: Most oil-well fires have now been put out, and most Palestinians have been forced to leave the country in retaliation of their support of the occupying Iraqis. This was a time of serious violations on human rights from the side of the Kuwaiti government. Kuwait pays USA $16,5 billion for their help.
October 5: Elections for a new national assembly is staged, where only the narrow electorate participates (13% of the nationals- no women). Opposition groups working for democracy, wins 31 of 50 seats.
1993 January: Iraq is forced by US military attacks to recognize the new borders, which leaves Kuwait with a bit larger territory than before 1990.
1994 October: Iraqi troops are stationed along the Kuwaiti-Iraq borders, but the attack many observers fear never materializes, and eventually the troops withdraw.
2006 June 29: Women partake for the first time in parliamentary elections. 28 out of 249 candidates are women, none wins a seat.
2009 October 28: Kuwaiti supreme court decides that women are not required to wear the hijab.

By Tore Kjeilen