June 19, 1961, marks a great event in Kuwait’s history, as it was the day the Gulf state gained its independence after being a British protectorate since the agreement was signed in 1899 by the seventh Amir, Sheikh Mubarak Al-Sabah, and Britain. Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, the eleventh Amir of Kuwait, came to realize that, in light of changes, Kuwait had come to have sufficient resources and that its people could no longer tolerate the limitations of being a British protectorate, and thus made the initiative to substitute it with an agreement of friendship.

Thus, on June 19, 1961, the British government cancelled the agreement of January 23, 1899, on grounds that it conflicted with Kuwait’s independence and sovereignty and signed the declaration of independence, bringing Kuwait into a new era. Independence, however, had long been a priority for Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem, where he said in his speech,

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