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Republic of Hatay (1937-1939)

Last modified: 2015-12-12 by ivan sache
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Flag of the Republic of Hatay - Image by Antonio Gutiérrez, 30 June 2000

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History of the Republic of Hatay

Quoting the Columbia Electronic Encyclopaedia:

Hatay, formerly sanjak of Alexandretta, Province (1990 pop. 1,002,252), 2,141 sq mi (5,545 sq km), South Turkey, including the towns of Antioch (now Antakya) and Alexandretta (now İskenderun). Iron is mined and Hatay is a transportation link with Syria and other parts of Turkey. The population is predominantly Arab but includes many Christians. The sanjak of Alexandretta was awarded to Syria in 1920 and in 1936 became the subject of a complaint to the League of Nations by Turkey, which claimed that the privileges of the Turkish minority in the sanjak were being infringed. The sanjak was given autonomous status in 1937 by an agreement, arranged by the League, between France (then mandatory power in Syria) and Turkey. Rioting by Turks and Arabs resulted (1938) in the establishment of joint French and Turkish military control. In 1939, France transferred the sanjak to Turkey and it became Hatay Province.

Hatay is still a sensitive issue in Turkey. Even nowadays Syria claims that the province of Hatay is Syrian territory, and they show this in their official maps.

Ulas Alpman, 13 April 2002

Flag of Hatay

The flag of Hatay was almost identical to the Turkish flag, except for a concentrical red star within the white one 2/3rds the size of the first. The crescent has an outer radius of 1/4th of the hoist width. The red star is inscribed into a circle of diameter 1/6th of the hoist width, whereas the white star is inscribed into a circle of diameter 1/4th of the hoist width.
The flag appears in the facsimile Flaggenbuch edition [neu92] in the corrections etc. section. It was ready to be included in the original edition [neu39] but was removed in the very last moment, so that its page (p. 79) was missing.

Santiago Dotor & Ivan Sache, 20 June 2000

Flag of the President of the Republic of Hatay

[Flag of the President of Hatay]

Flag of the President of the Republic of Hatay - Image by Antonio Gutiérrez & Ivan Sache, 12 March 2002

A colour plate by the German Vexillological Society (page no longer online), showing Syrian flags, depicts the flag of the President of the Republic of Hatay. It is similar to the flag of Hatay, but with crescent and star less skewed to the host, and a second star in canton.

Ivan Sache, 12 March 2002

Flag of Hatay(?) shown in the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

[Flag of Hatay?]

Flag of Hatay in Indiana Jones movie - Image by Guiseppe Bottasini, 16 June 2000

The last part of the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade occurs in a (fictitious?) Arabic state called Hatay. The flag shown above appears many times in the movie. In the red device there are some Arabic writing but I cannot reproduce them.

Giuseppe Bottasini, 16 June 2000

This flag was also used in another movie, I believe, but it was not Hatay's flag. I am convinced it is real, however. The central medallion is borrowed from a carved door panel from the El Salih Talay mosque in Cairo, Egypt. It appears that the shahadda or confession of Islamic faith is inscribed therein. I first thought the flag was from Hejaz, but that kingdom used the pan-Arab colours from the outset. It could be that this flag was from the clan of Rashid Ali, of the Jebel Shammar, whose family fought Ibn Sa'ud for control of Arabia. As it stands, they lost and were conquered by the Sa'udis.

Glenn Stefanovics, 16 June 2000