The Decline and Fall of The Zand Dynasty

- 15 - and the Gulf. AHurmuz ship, loaded with a high value cargo, coming from Muscat and heading for Bahrain, was seized. Some other ships were chased, but they managed to escape. Ali Mir Shah, a Qeshm notable, stated that he had received a Persian royal decree with similar instructions as given to Sheikh Abdullah al-Ma‘ini of Hurmuz, but he refused to act upon it.(5) The Ottoman government then decided to end all the idle talks with the Persians regarding peace, and moved to liberate Basra by force. In early December 1776, Sheikh Thamer al-Saadun of Almuntafiq, together with 20,000 Arab men and some Turks arrived to al-Qarna, at the entrance to Shatt al-Arab, where they set their camp. The road between Qarna and Hilla, then to Baghdad was opened. There were some Ottoman battalions arriving to Baghdad and heading south to liberate Basra. After the Persians took over Basra, the East India Company decided to open an office in al-Qurain, Kuwait, to transport its cargo by land, via the desert