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Makran, Pakistan

Last modified: 2003-06-14 by
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[Makran] 2:3 by Zeljko Heimer

In his book "Les drapeaux de l'Islam", Lux-Wurm (2001) describes a rather enigmatic "Makran" flag. Makran is the name of the coastal area of Pakistan along the Oman Sea. The name of the area might have been derived from Persan "mah-i-khoran" (fish eaters), Sumerian "magan", or Parthic "makuran". Makran was conquered by Cyrus in 530 BC. The Arabs settled in Makran in 643, and Muhamad ben Qasim Al Thakafi introduced Islam there in 711. According to the Moslim geographers of that time, Makran was a desert and hostile land. In Xth century, the Afghan Ghaznevid dynasty established in Makran a vassal Emirate to gain an access to the sea. The Ghorid dynasty did the same in 1186. In 1290, Marco Polo sailed along the coast of Makran and mentioned "Kesmacoran", ruled by a Baluch king. In XVIIth century, a local ruler, the Khan of Kalat, offered the area to the Sultan of Musqat, who appointed a "wali", a kind of Governor-Resident. It seems that the flag of Makran dates back to this period. In 1958, the Sultan of Oman sold the territory to Pakistan, which  incorporated it into the province of Baluchistan.

The flag is 2:3, horizontally divided green-red-blue with a white crescent and star in upper fly. The crescent and star placed on the green stripe symbolize Islam, the red stripe recalls Muskat plain red flag, and the blue stripe symbolizes the coast.

Ivan Sache, 27 April 2002

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