Qatar’s National Day last week on the 18th December provided a spectacular parade; fireworks, illuminations to rival the best and of course thousands of flags. Hung, painted or waved maroon and white were definitely the ‘in’ colours and many buildings are still displaying them.
Qatar’s flag is unique among flags, as it is exceptionally long in relation to height. The present flag was adopted on independence in 1971 and the nine points of the serrated edge are symbolic of Qatar as the ninth member of the ‘reconciled’ Emirates of the Arabian Gulf, after the conclusion of the 1916 Qatar-British Treaty. White is symbolic of peace and the maroon commemorates the defence of the country in war. This National Day it has been given the name of ‘Al Addaam’ (maroon) which was first used to describe it by Sheikh Mohamed bin Thani during a battle in 1851 to unite the tribes under one flag.
Respecting the Flag
A law passed on the eve of National Day makes it binding to observe several rules when using the flag. Those affecting the general public include stopping and standing upright when it is hoisted or lowered, and facing it during the singing of the national anthem. Any flag hung should be in a prominent position, have fresh colours and be clean. The white edge should be positioned near the hoist or if hung vertically with the white at the top. The Qatari flag should also be clearly displayed on vessels in the state’s territorial waters.
Wish You Were Here
Enjoy a few shots from the great day and a look at the decorations and lighting along the Corniche and West Bay Towers. Tradition and modernity provided plenty of variety and, of course, those flags provided inspiration to create a great outfit!