Jidda

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Jidda

Jidda (jĭˈdə) or Jedda (jĕ–), city (1993 est. pop. 2,058,000), Hejaz, W Saudi Arabia, on the Red Sea. Jidda is the port of Mecca (c.45 mi/72 km to the east) and annually receives a huge influx of pilgrims, mainly from Africa, Indonesia, and Pakistan. Unlike Mecca, Jidda has always accepted visitors of all religions. The diverse local population includes a large admixture of Africans, Persians, Yemenis, and Indians. Most are employed in the oil industry. There are few exports, but many goods are imported to support the pilgrims. The city is the administrative capital of Saudi Arabia. Jidda was ruled by the Turks until 1916, when it became part of the independent Hejaz. In 1925 it was conquered by Ibn Saud. Oil wealth brought expansion of the city and its seaport; the city walls came down in 1947 and a desalinization plant was built in the 1970s. Present Jidda is not more than three centuries old, but Old Jidda, c.12 mi (19 km) south of the modern city, was founded c.646 by the caliph Uthman.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Jidda

 

(Juddah), a city in Saudi Arabia. Population, 194,000 (1965). A port on the Red Sea, it has an airport. Jidda is a large commercial and industrial center of the’ province of Hejaz. There is boat-building and working of marble in the city. The city has soap, furniture, footwear and luggage factories as well as enterprises of the textile and food industries. Religious articles are manufactured in Jidda, and there are cement, oxygen, and brick factories nearby. Jidda is a transit point for pilgrims on a hajj.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Jidda

, Jedda
a port in W Saudi Arabia, on the Red Sea: the diplomatic capital of the country; the port of entry for Mecca, 80 km (50 miles) east. Pop.: 3 807 000 (2005 est.)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005