Dayr az Zawr
[key], town, capital of Dayr az Zawr governorate, E Syria, on the
Euphrates River. It is a prosperous farming town, with cattle-breeding and
an agricultural school. It is also a hub for transdesert travel and has an
airport. Salt rock mines are nearby. The modern town was built by the
Ottoman Empire in 1867. France occupied Dayr az Zawr in 1921 and made it the
seat of a large garrison. In 1946 it became part of independent Syria. It is
a cultural center and has a university, but the city suffered significant
devastation in Syria's civil war, when it was besieged (2014–17) by
Islamic State forces. The town's name also is tranliterated as Deir al-Zour
and Dayr al-Zur.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Syrian Political Geography