Federation of the Islamic Trucial States




Bandar Seri Begawan

Head of State

Her Imperial Majesty, the Queen-Empress Elizabeth II, of Great Britain and the Dominions beyond the Seas (from 1972)

Head of Government

Sultan Iskandar of Johor (from 1980)

Ruling Party

Islamic Party (from 1957)


Federation formed in 1957 by the fiat of Great Britain, from a number of small Islamic principalities and kingdoms of the Malay Peninsula, Arabian Gulf and Indian sub-continent under the protection of the British Empire or under truce with the British. Several other Muslim states, including Jordan, were invited to join by the British but declined. Kuwait joined the Federation only when threatened by annexation by neighbouring Iraq.

The idea of the Federation was, at least in part, a response of the new British premier Oswald Mosley, to the challenge of the revolutionary anti-colonialist forces backed in some cases by Japan and/or by the United States of America.


  • Kuwait
  • Qatar
  • Bahrain
  • Abu Dhabi
  • Ajman
  • Dubai
  • Sharjah
  • Um al-Quwain
  • Ras al-Khaimah
  • Fujairah
  • Oman
  • Muscat
  • Zanzibar
  • Gwadar
  • Johor
  • Negeri Sembilan
  • Selangor
  • Pahang
  • Brunei
  • Perlis

Four provinces of Thailand (Perlis, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu) and a state of the United States of the Philippines (Mindanao) are claimed. Singapore and Malacca added after their annexation to Johor, Penang after its annexation to Perak, and Sabah after its annexation to Brunei, all in 1965. Sharjah expanded with annexation of Dibba, Hira and Kalba, while Aden was ultimately lost to Yemen. The Maldives were lost to Pakistan.

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