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This Web Site Is Dedicated For The Arab League

photo by E. S. Haynes, November 1995

Arab League, informal name of the League of Arab States, a voluntary association of independent countries whose peoples are mainly Arabic speaking. Its stated purposes are to strengthen ties among the member states, coordinate their policies, and promote their common interests.

Members of the Arab League
Algeria Bahrain Comoros Djibouti
Egypt Iraq Jordan Kuwait
Lebanon Libya Mauritania Morocco
Oman Palestine Qatar Saudi Arabia
Somalia Sudan Syria Tunisia
United Arab Emirates Yemen    

The Arab League was founded in Cairo in 1945 by Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Transjordan (Jordan, as of 1950), and Yemen. Countries that later joined are: Algeria (1962), Bahrain (1971), Comoros (1993), Djibouti (1977), Kuwait (1961), Libya (1953), Mauritania (1973), Morocco (1958), Oman (1971), Qatar (1971), Somalia (1974), Southern Yemen (1967), Sudan (1956), Tunisia (1958), and the United Arab Emirates (1971). The Palestine Liberation Organization was admitted in 1976. Egypt's membership was suspended in 1979 after it signed a peace treaty with Israel; the league's headquarters was moved from Cairo, Egypt, to Tunis, Tunisia. In 1987 Arab leaders decided to renew diplomatic ties with Egypt. Egypt was readmitted to the league in 1989 and the league's headquarters was moved back to Cairo.

The Arab League is involved in political, economic, cultural, and social programs designed to promote the interests of member states. The Arab League has served as a forum for member states to coordinate their policy positions and deliberate on matters of common concern, settling some Arab disputes and limiting conflicts such as the Lebanese civil wars of 1958. The Arab League has served as a platform for the drafting and conclusion of almost all landmark documents promoting economic integration among member states, such as the creation of the Joint Arab Economic Action Charter, which set out the principles for economic activities of the league. It has played an important role in shaping school curricula, and preserving manuscripts and Arab cultural heritage. The Arab League has launched literacy campaigns, and reproduced intellectual works, and translated modern technical terminology for the use of member states. It encourages measures against crime and drug abuse and deals with labor issues (particularly among the emigrant Arab workforce).

The Arab League has also fostered cultural exchanges between member states, encouraged youth and sports programs, helped to advance the role of women in Arab societies, and promoted child welfare activities.

The Egyptian government first proposed the Arab League in 1943. Egypt and some of the other Arab states wanted closer cooperation without the loss of self-rule that would result from total union. The original charter of the Arab League created a regional organization of sovereign states that was neither a union nor a federation. Among the goals the league set for itself were winning independence for all Arabs still under alien rule, and to prevent the Jewish minority in Palestine (then governed by the British) from creating a Jewish state. The members eventually formed a joint defense council, an economic council, and a permanent military command.



Alexandria Protocol (1944)

The Charter of the Arab League (1945)

Cultural Treaty of the Arab League (1946)

Joint Defense and Economic Cooperation Treaty between teh States of the Arab League (1950-52)

Sessions of the Arab League

Secretaries-General of the Arab League

Subsidiary Bodies of the Arab League:


General Maps of the Region:

General Satellite Images:

U.S. State Department Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs

Human Rights Watch: Middle East general

Levant WWW Server (Norway)

Center for Arab Gulf Studies, University of Exeter