French Somaliland (French: Côte française des Somalis, lit. Somali: Dhulka Soomaaliyeed ee Faransiiska) was a French colony in the Horn of Africa. It existed between 1884 and 1967. Djibouti is its legal successor state.
It was established in 1896 after the Issa and Afar each signed a treaty with the French. The March 11, 1862, agreement the Afar sultan, Raieta Dini Ahmet, signed in Paris was a treaty where the Afars sold the territory of Obock for 10,000 thalaris, around 55,000 francs. Later on, that treaty was used by the captain of the Fleuriot de Langle to colonize the south of the Bay of Tadjoura. On March 26, 1885 the French signed another treaty with the Issa where the latter would become a protectorate under the French, no monetary exchange occurred and the Somalis did not sign away any of their rights to the land; the agreement was to protect their land from outsiders with the help of the French. However, after the French sailors of the vessel Le Pingouin were mysteriously killed in Ambado in 1886, the French blamed first the British, then the Somalis and further used that incident to lay claim to the entire southern territory.
The area became an overseas territory of France in 1946. In 1967, French Somaliland was renamed the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas and, in 1977, it became the independent country of Djibouti.