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Bahrain: Al-Khalifa family tree

Bahrain’s Al-Khalifa originated in central Arabia. From the same Utub tribe as Kuwait’s Al-Sabahs, they first settled in Qatar in the 17th century, then Kuwait and finally Bahrain. Their power was reinforced in the islands by an historic alliance with Britain, and by ties to other local Sunni communities. Britain let Bahrain go in 1971 only after securing the promise of the Shah’s Iran to renounce its historic claim to the islands.

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