Socotra

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Socotra

(səkō`trə, sō–), island, 1,383 sq mi (3,582 sq km), S Yemen, at the mouth of the Gulf of Aden. With three much smaller islands to the west it forms the Socotra Archipelago governorate. Socotra's mountainous interior rises to c.5,000 ft (1,520 m). Its unusual plants and animals, many of them unique to the island, make Socotra one of the most biologically diverse locations in the world. The inhabitants speak Socotri, a South Semitic language. Most farm, fish, or herd; exports include fish, ghee, aloes, and frankincense.

Known to the ancient Greeks, Socotra shared the political fortunes of S Arabia, though it remained predominantly Christian until the 17th cent. The Portuguese briefly occupied the island in the early 1500s, and it was occupied by the East India Company in 1834. In 1886 it became part of Britain's Aden protectorate and was used as a refueling station. In 1967, Socotra was joined to the newly formed nation of South Yemen, which merged with northern Yemen in 1990. The island was the site of a Soviet base in the 1970s and 80s.

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Socotra

 

(also Sokotra, Soqotra), a group of islands in the Indian Ocean, the largest of which is Socotra. The islands, located east of Cape Guardafui in Africa, belong to the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen. They cover an area of 3,600 sq km and are composed chiefly of crystalline rocks. The maximum elevation is 1,503 m, on the island of Socotra. The climate is tropical and dry. The average temperature is 21°C in January and 28°C in June. Annual precipitation is between 250 and 300 mm. The islands have semidesert vegetation, with groves of xerophytic trees in the east and in the mountainous regions. The population engages in the cultivation of date palms, the raising of sheep and goats, and fishing.

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

Socotra

, Sokotra, Suqutra
an island in the Indian Ocean, about 240 km (150 miles) off Cape Guardafui, Somalia: administratively part of Yemen. Capital: Tamrida. Area: 3100 sq. km (1200 sq. miles)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
"Half the money we raise will go to the British non-governmental organisation Friends of Socotra with the rest going to a Socotran environmental activist.
One Socotran, an old man from a village outside of Homril, to the east, asked if it was a piece of plastic when he came up the beach road and found me sitting and staring at the tent as Callia slept, and I told him no, it was a scientist.
and Thabet, A.M.: 1997, Field observations from the Socotran platform: their interpretation and correlation to Southern Oman.
Socotrans then eat their meat and drink their oil, believed to have special healing powers.
Three were built by Socotran residents, whereas the fourth one belongs to Yahya Mohammed Saleh, a nephew of the former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
Shaking hands and giving nose kisses when greeting others is a Socotran tradition during Eid.
Like the UK government, Socotran authorities cited health as one of the considerations behind the ban.
SANA'A, June 10--On Sunday local Socotran authorities banned the qat trade in Hadibo, the capital city of Arkhabeel Socotra governorate, and ordered qat shops to be moved out of the city.
Khalid Bahaj is a native Socotran who says he will no longer need to travel to Hadramout in order to deal with bureaucratic paperwork.
After the four months end, celebrations and wedding ceremonies are held by Socotran families to celebrate their return back home.
When the Saudi-led coalition began bombing Al Houthi targets in Yemen in 2015, the national airline, Yemenia, suspended flights to the island, prompting Socotrans to rely more and more on perilous sea voyages to the mainland.
It is part of the development agreement signed between the Autonomous Port of Pointe-Noire and the syndicate formed by Bollore Africa Logistics and its local partners Socotrans, Samariti and Translo.