What is Arab League?

May 24, 2024

The Arab League recently called for UN peacekeeping forces in the Palestinian territories during a summit in Bahrain's Manama.

About Arab League:

  • The Arab League, also called the League of Arab States (LAS), is a regional organization of Arab states in the Middle East and parts of Africa.
  • Formation:
    • It was formed in Cairo on March 22, 1945.
    • It was chartered in response to concerns about postwar colonial divisions of territory as well as strong opposition to the emergence of a Jewish state on Palestinian territory.
  • Goals:
    • The overall aim of the league is to promote Arab interests.
    • Its main goals are to strengthen and coordinate the political, cultural, economic, and social programs of its members and to try to settle disputes among them or between them and third parties.
    • In 1950, the members also agreed to provide military support to help defend each other.
  • Headquarters: Cairo, Egypt.
  • Official language: Arabic
  • Members:
    • Currently, it has 22 members. The founding member states of the league are Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen.
    • Members who joined later are Libya, Sudan, Tunisia, Morocco, Kuwait, Algeria, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Mauritania, Somalia, the Palestine Liberation Organization, Djibouti, and Comoros.
    • The League regards Palestine as an independent state. 
  • There are four nations that were conferred observer status by the League: Brazil, Eritrea, India, and Venezuela.
  • Council:
    • The highest body of the league is the Council, composed of representatives of member states, usually foreign ministers, their representatives, or permanent delegates. 
    • The League makes decisions on a majority basis, but there is no mechanism to compel members to comply with resolutions.
    • Each member has one vote on the Council, with decisions binding only on those states that have voted for them.