Early Settlement and Trade (6th Century - 9th Century)
The Comoros Islands were likely first settled by Austronesian seafarers. The islands became a stopover in the Indian Ocean trade routes, connecting Madagascar, mainland Africa, and the Middle East.
Islamic Influence (10th Century - 14th Century)
Arab traders introduced Islam to the islands, leading to the gradual conversion of the local population. The introduction of Islam brought about significant social change, possibly leading to tensions between converts and those adhering to traditional beliefs.
Social and Political Tensions (12th Century - 15th Century)
The establishment of sultanates and the influx of different cultural and religious groups likely led to power struggles and social divisions. Rivalries among sultanates and competition for trade and resources could have led to conflicts and alliances, both internal and external.
Portuguese Exploration (16th Century)
Portuguese explorers arrived in the Comoros in the early 16th century. However, their influence remained limited compared to the prevailing Islamic culture and sultanates.
French Colonisation (1841 - 1975)
France began its colonisation of the Comoros Islands in 1841 with the annexation of Mayotte. Over the years, France extended its control over the remaining islands. The islands were officially made a French overseas territory in 1912.
Independence Movement (1960s - 1975)
As decolonisation swept through Africa, the Comoros also saw a rise in nationalist sentiments. On July 6, 1975, Comoros declared independence, but the island of Mayotte chose to remain under French control, a point of contention that continues to this day.
Political Instability (1975 - 2000s)
Post-independence Comoros experienced a series of coups, political assassinations, and mercenary interventions. The political instability severely affected the country's development and international relations.
Economic Challenges and Development (2000s - Present)
Comoros faces numerous economic challenges, including poverty, unemployment, and a lack of natural resources. However, remittances from the diaspora and international aid have helped in some development projects.
Contemporary Issues (21st Century)
Today, Comoros grapples with issues of political governance, economic development, and social cohesion. The question of Mayotte's status and relations with France also remains a significant issue.