Khuzestan(kho͞ozēstän`), province (1991 pop. 3,175,852), c.24,000 sq mi (62,160 sq km), SW Iran, bordering on Iraq in the west and the Persian Gulf in the south. Its major cities include AhvazAhvaz
, city (1991 pop. 724,653), SW Iran, on the Karun River. It is an oil center, a transportation hub, and an industrial city that has petrochemical, textile, and food-processing industries. An ancient city, Ahvaz was rebuilt (3d cent. A.D.
..... Click the link for more information. (the capital), KhorramshahrKhorramshahr
, city (1991 pop. 34,750), Khuzestan prov., SW Iran, at the confluence of the Karun River and the Shatt al Arab, near the Persian Gulf. It is a busy port. Its development dates to the late 19th cent., when steam navigation on the Karun was started.
..... Click the link for more information. , DezfulDezful
, city (1991 pop. 181,309), Khuzestan prov., SW Iran, on the Dez River, near the site of ancient Susa. It is the trade center for an irrigated farm region. Petroleum is produced nearby.
..... Click the link for more information. , and AbadanAbadan
, city (1991 pop. 84,774), Khuzestan prov., SW Iran, on Abadan Island, in the delta of the Shatt al Arab, at the head of the Persian Gulf. It is the terminus of major oil pipelines and is an important oil refining and shipping center.
..... Click the link for more information. . Mountainous in the east, it has a hot, dry climate; agricultural products include dates, citrus fruit, rice, and vegetables. Khuzestan has enormous petroleum deposits. Dams on the Dez River in the northern part of the province provide water for irrigation and hydroelectricity. There is a rail line and an extensive road network. The province, which was formerly called Arabistan, has an Arab majority. The area was conquered (7th cent.) by the Arabs and invaded (13th cent.) by the Mongols; it passed to Timur in the 14th cent. Development of the oil industry in the 20th cent. has led to growth of Khuzestan's population and economy. Iranian government efforts to encourage more ethnic Persians to relocate to Khuzestan has sparked unrest among the Arabs there.
a historical region in southwestern Iran.
In the third and second millennia B.C., the kingdom of Elam occupied the area that subsequently became Khuzestan. In the Sassanid period land cultivation underwent development in Khuzestan, but after the irrigation system was destroyed, nomadic stock raising and handicrafts became predominant.
In the seventh century A.D., Khuzestan, with the rest of Iran, became part of the Arab Caliphate. It was part of the Buyid Kingdom in the tenth and 11th centuries, the Seljuk state in the 11th and 12th centuries, and the Hulaguid state in the 13th and 14th centuries. In the early 16th century Khuzestan was conquered by the Safavids. From the seventh to 15th centuries it was a major center of various religious sectarian and antifeudal movements, such as the Kharijite, Shiite, Karmathian, and Zinji movements and the movement led by Musha Sha. From 1909 to 1951, Khuzestan lay within the sphere of influence of the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (after 1935, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company).