Perim [key], Arab. Barim, island, c.5 sq mi (13 sq km), off the SW Arabian peninsula in the Bab el Mandeb strait; it is part of Yemen. A rocky and barren island rising to c.215 ft (65 m), it is strategically located at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. Perim was occupied by France in the 18th cent., and then briefly by Britain (1799). It was reoccupied (1857) by the British and later connected administratively with Aden. Perim flourished (1883–1936) as a coaling station but declined when oil became more widely used by ships. In 1967, Perim's small population voted to become part of South Yemen (since merged with Yemen).
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