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In early 2017, Qatar's total population was 2.6 million: 313,000 Qatari citizens and 2.3 million expatriates.

The country has the highest per capita income in the world.

Its sole land border is with neighboring Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) monarchy Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf.

An arm of the Persian Gulf separates Qatar from the nearby Bahrain.

Following Ottoman rule, Qatar became a British protectorate in the early 20th century until gaining independence in 1971.

In addition, the Ottomans supported the Ottoman subject Mohammed bin Abdul Wahab who attempted to supplant Al Thani as kaymakam of Qatar in 1888.In the 21st century, Qatar emerged as a significant power in the Arab world, reportedly supporting several rebel groups during the Arab Spring both financially and through its globally expanding media group, Al Jazeera Media Network.Pliny the Elder, a Roman writer, documented the earliest account pertaining to the inhabitants of the Peninsula around the mid-first century AD, referring to them as the Catharrei, a designation which may have derived from the name of a prominent local settlement.However, the Bahraini hostilities were in violation of the 1820 Anglo-Bahraini Treaty.The joint incursion, in addition to the Qatari counterattack, prompted British political agent Lewis Pelly to impose a settlement in 1868.

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