about AD 570
The prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca.
Muhammad returned from Medina and conquered Mecca. The Islamic
conquest of Arabia began.
The caliphs moved from Medina to Damascus, Syria. Arabia
declined in importance within the Muslim Empire.
The Saud dynasty was founded near modern Riyadh.
Saudi armies helped spread the Wahhabi Islamic reform movement
over much of Arabia.
Following defeat by Ottoman forces, the Saud family
established a new capital at Riyadh.
Family feuds weakened Saudi power, and much of Arabia was
conquered by the Ottoman Empire and local tribal chiefs. The Saud family fled
into exile in Kuwait.
Abdul Aziz ibn Saud returned from Kuwait and captured Riyadh.
Saudi forces controlled the Najd region.
Saudi forces captured the Al Ahsa’, ‘Asir’, and Al Hijaz (Hejaz)
regions, unifying much of Arabia under Saudi rule.
Ibn Saud proclaimed the unified Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The first major petroleum deposit in Saudi Arabia was
Saudi Arabia became a founding member of the United Nations
and of the Arab League.
Ibn Saud died. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Saud.
Saud was forced from the throne and succeeded by his brother,
Faisal. Faisal used oil profits to help modernize the country, and made Saudi
Arabia more active in world affairs.
Saudi Arabia offered financial support to Arab countries
fighting Israel during the Six-Day War.
Rising oil prices greatly increased Saudi Arabia's export
earnings. Many new development projects were funded by the new wealth.
Saudi Arabia stopped or reduced oil exports to many Western
countries following the Yom Kippur War between Israel and neighboring Arab
Crown Prince Fahd assumed the throne after the death of his
half brother, King Khalid.
After Iraq invaded Kuwait, troops from the United States and
other Western nations arrived in Saudi Arabia to help defend the country
against an Iraqi invasion.
Saudi Arabia joined a U.S.-led coalition that drove Iraq out
of Kuwait during the Persian Gulf War.
King Fahd officially inaugurated the Shura Council, an
advisory body of 60 members, established in response to calls for governmental
Saudi Arabia's economy was hurt by falling oil prices and
Saudi Arabia and Yemen agreed to negotiate a settlement to
their longstanding dispute over the border between the two countries.