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The Arab League was founded in 1945 and has 22 members.

The Organization has three observer members Eritrea, India and Venezuela. Turkey and Iran have both expressed their desire to join as observers,[citation needed] but their requests were delayed due to political problems with other Arab states, especially Iraq, Egypt and Syria.[citation needed]

The Arab League itself is an Observer in several International and regional organizations, such as the Non-Aligned Movement, the African Union, the United Nations, and has observed several summits of ASEAN.

Diplomatic relations of the Arab League[1]      Arab League member states and      Arab League embassies, delegations and Offices      European Union and African Union
Arab League
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This article is part of the series:
Life in
the Arab League

  

Contents

Multilateral Relations

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African Union

Even though there are nine Arab League members that are also members of the African Union, The Arab League/African Union relations officially started in 1977 when the AU was the OAU, when both organizations announced their cooperation in financial, political and economic issues. With a summit between both organizations in Cairo that same year, they have signed several treaties to include each other to improve cooperation. The Treaty also included a Military cooperation and Understanding too. On the 16th of January 2008, the Arab League sent a Delegation to the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopian Capital, to gain Experience from the African Security and Peace Council, which has been in work since 2004, the Arab League's decision to create an Arab Peace and Security Council was taken following the 2006 Lebanon war, in a procedure to place Peace keeping forces into Darfure, South Lebanon, and Somalia, other regions such as Iraq have not been announced or spoken of, since the Arab League's official Stance denounces any form of Foreign troops in Iraq, to maintain stability.

 Eritrea

in 2003, Eritrea became the first Observer in the Pan-Arab Body, opening the door for it to become a prospect member in the League, while the Current Eritrean President has denied any plans for joining the League in the Near Future, due to its lack of efficiency.[2]

ASEAN

By January 2008 the AL and ASEAN had no significant relations, but the Arab League's Economic Council decided to Expand economic cooperation with Regional blocks, to benefit from their Economic experience and development, and started contacting the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), to build better relations and to increase investments from this region, and to learn from their Economic Achievements to be applied in the League. which will help the Arab States to increase inner investments and inner imports and exports, the Head of the Delegation, also secretary General of the Arab Council for Economic Development (ACED), Dr. Ahmed Jweily to sign a treaty of understanding and cooperation Between the Two Organizations. The Delegation concluded the visit announcing that three New Arab Unions are to be proposed for the Council's 87th summit in its following Period.

 European Union

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The Arab League and European Union have shared relations since the EU's development into a more political power rather than an economical one, in the 19th summit of the Arab League in Saudi Arabia, Javier Solana attended the summit, giving the EU's full support to the Arab League's Peace Initiative of 2002. Following this summit, he had several meetings with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa. In the summit, he addressed the Arab Leaders:

"once again we find ourselves together, the European Union and the Arab League, once again we have an opportunity to re-affirm our joint commitment to the values of civilisation that we share, more than ever Europeans and Arabs have to face common challenges, I am confident that we will find new ways to improve our cooperation"[2]

 France

France has been historically close with the Arab world, starting with the Maghrib region, and the Near East, but France's closest relations are considered to be with Algeria, where it served as a colony of France for around 200 years, with a bloody independence war, relations today are good, France is considered to have the Cordialest relations with All Arab states, with a large Arab population in France counting to around 1 million Arabs, France holds the Biggest Arab Cultural center outside the Arab league.

  • Algeria

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  • Lebanon

main article Since the end of the Lebanese civil war, France has played an active role in the reconstruction of Lebanon. The Hexagon is the leading investor in the Country of Ceders.

  • Libya

main article Libya developed particularly close relations with France after the June 1967 War, when France relaxed its arms embargo on nonfront-line Middle East combatants and agreed to sell weapons to the Libyans. In 1974 Libya and France signed an agreement whereby Libya exchanged a guaranteed oil supply for technical assistance and financial cooperation.

Latin America

Arab-Latin American relations don't go so far, they are very new, the AL secretary general Amr Moussa has stated that it was time for the Arab League and Latin America to seek strong relations, there are over 20 million Arabs living in Latin America with Brazil leading with over half of that number, so it wasn't a surprise that Brazilian President Lula offered his support for these relations with open arms.

The Arab-Latin American relations are concentrated mainly on Energy and Trade, strengthening ties between the two regions. In May 2005, the first Arab-Latin American summit was held, with 34 countries attending the summit that was held in Brazil. they gathered to discuss trade, and energy. Arab and Latin American economies are complementary. Latin America has developed high-tech skills and industries that will find ready markets in the Arab world as will its agricultural production. But Latin America is also energy-hungry and a ready market for Arab oil and downstream petrochemicals. They also have other common interests, not just a desire to see the elimination of the subsidies that allow European and American farmers to destroy the livelihoods of their counterparts elsewhere in the world. In an increasingly global economy, both want to avoid domination by the multinationals.

 Venezuela

Venezuela has a large Arab population from Lebanon and Palestine, has supported the Palestinian Cause, and is one of two Latin American countries to cut off ties with Israel.

Bilateral Relations

 India

Being conferred observer status in 2007, India was the first member to enter the League although it does not have an Arab community, neither does it have an indegenous Arabic speaking population. Trade between India and Arab League members was valued at US$ 30 billion in 2007.[3] India's major exports to Arab League countries are chemicals, automobiles, machinery, foodstuff and other fast moving products, while it is a large importer of Arab oil and gas. India also has a large diaspora in the Arab League countries of about 5 million, of which some 20% are professionals.[4] . Oman and India enjoy particularly good relations, an example being; both countries exchange ship visits on a regular basis.[5] Recently, Oman has granted India berthing rights for Indian naval ships.[5][6] The Indian navy has also been training Omani naval forces for many years.[7]

Qatar is the only other country in the Arab League, apart from Oman to have a significant military relationship with India.[5] The pact guarantees Qatar of Indian intervention in case Qatar's interests are threatened.[8] Naval officers from Qatar, like Oman train in India under the Indian Navy's institutes. India also has some military ties with Kuwait and the UAE, primarily centered in the naval sphere, frequently exchanging goodwill naval visits.[9] The UAE has been seeking India's assistance in setting up a submarine arm and hydgrographic survey and coastal zone management.[10] In addition the UAE has evinced interest in training its naval personnel in India[10]

Some Arab League members, namely the UAE have also voiced their support pertaining to deploying Indian troops in Iraq, although New Delhi has not decided on this matter.[11] Some Arab League members have also voiced its support for India to be conferred a permanent seat on the UN Security Council.[12] However, strong Indian relations with Israel in recent years have aroused the sentiments of some Arab League members owing to India's increasingly ambiguous stance on the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.[13] As far as the Jammu & Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan is concerned, past resolutions by OIC, which is represented by all Arab League members have supported Pakistan's position on Kashmir,[14] although the Arab League itself has refrained from commenting on the Kashmir issue by dismissing it as an issue not on the League's agenda.[12]

 Iran

Iranian-Arab relations have always been very mixed. Within the Middle East historical conflicts have always colored neighbouring Arab countries' perceptions about Iran. At times peacefully coexisting, while at other times in bitter conflict. North African Arabs from the have for the larger part enjoyed closer relations with Iran due to limited historical connection between them and Iran.

 Israel

Only two Arab States recognize Israel: Egypt, and Jordan, though it should be noted that these relations are not normal and contain inherent problems. Relations with Israel have deteriorated, especially after the last Gaza War, where Mauritania had suspended its relations with Israel.[15]

 Pakistan

Pakistan has enjoyed close and strong historical relationship with the Middle-Eastern region, particularly Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Syria, Jordan, Yemen and Lebanon. Today there are over One million Pakistanis living and working in Saudi Arabia alone, with a similar number in other Persian Gulf region countries that constitute the Arab League. These ties were put to the test when a massive earth-quake hit Pakistan's Northern Areas in 2005 with Saudi Arabia & UAE promptly dispatching critical aid, not only in terms of medicine & essential supplies but massive injunction of billions of dollars for the reconstruction of the region.[16] Pakistan also enjoys extensive cultural & defense/military ties with most of the Arab League member states. Pakistan also has extensive trade ties with Arab League states, especially Saudi Arabia and the UAE with Saudi Arabia ranking as Pakistan's second largest trading partner after the United States.[17] With such close association to the Arab League, Pakistan was also invited by Russian President, Vladimir Putin in 2006 to the First Session of the Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group in 2006[18] in a bid to strengthen Moscow's ties with the big players in the Muslim world.

Army, Naval and Air Force cadets from many of the Arab League countries routinely enroll in training courses in Pakistan's well-recognized military academies while Pakistan Air Force pilots have flown Egyptian, Jordanian, Syrian and Saudi fighter gets both in war (1967 & 1973 against Israel) & peacetime as part of their 'foreign deployments'.[19] Units from the Pakistan Army, Navy and Air Force also serve allotted time periods in their respective fields in Saudi Arabia and UAE as instructors, maintenance crews, etc while there are strong indications that a company of Elite Pakistani Commandos, the SSG maintains a permanent unit in Saudi Arabia to safeguard Islam's holiest sites as well as the Saudi Royal Family.

In 2007 Pakistani President, Pervez Musharraf attended the Arab League summit held in Riyadh even though Pakistan had not yet gained 'Observer Member' status. Pakistan is currently in the stages of finalizing a Free Trade Agreement with the GCC countries, many of whom are also part of the Arab League while talks continue to grant Pakistan the 'Observer' status in the coming months. The country also has a long history of being an ardent supporter of several Arab causes, including Palestine, Iraq, Somalian crisis, etc.

 People's Republic of China

China's economic boom has led to the oil addiction it was suffering to boom with it. Chinese-Arab relations in the past few years have increased fast with several Arab-Chinese business forums, conferences and meetings to increase trade and Cooperation. China is Sudan's second biggest investor, after Arab States. Sudan's oil that seems to be large, is being sent to China. Some of China's first foreign relations were made with Arab States such as Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Iraq and Syria.

In 2008 the Arab League and People's Republic of China, following a Visit by the Arab League secretary general, have agreed to create an Annual forum between the two of them, on an Economical, Environmental and Political levels, with the Ministers of these section of China, and the Representative of the Ministerial Arab Councils, by 2009, the forum is expected to expand to include Nuclear projects.

 Russia

Arab Russian relations goes far since the Khazars and their wars with the Arab Empire, but has flourished most under the soviet Union, with the USSR's support for several Arab regimes against the Capitalist America during the cold war, regims like Nasser's and the Baathist regims of Syria and Iraq, as well as other regims in Libya, and Yemen. But after the end of the cold war, and the emerging of Russia, new ties have been made. Russia with its strong diplomatic relations with Arab States from the Soviet Era, is trying to regain its strength by supporting their causes, especially in the Security Council.

Amr Moussa Shaking Hands with the Russian President Dmitry Medvedev

 Turkey

Turkey has expressed desires for an observer status in the League, and has been refused for several political reasons, one of the reasons for refusals came from Iraq and Syria due to the Turkish Water Projects on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, especially the Atatürk Dam, also the Hatay Province's choice of self-annexation to Turkey in 1939 was never recognized by Syria, which continues to show the Hatay Province of Turkey as part of Syria's territory in its maps. another reason for the refusal was the Turkish recognition of the State of Israel.

Today, Turkey has a better Relations with Arab Countries, such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Tunisia, it is also the main Broker in the Israeli-Syrian Peace process, on the other hand, A primary concern for Turkey was an independent Kurdish state arising from a destabilised Iraq; it has previously fought an insurgent war on its own soil, in which an estimated 37,000 people lost their lives, against the PKK (listed as a terrorist organization by a number of states and organisations, including the U.S. and the EU).

 United States

The United States’ relationship with the Arab World prior to the Second World War was limited. Moreover, in comparison to European powers such as Britain and France which had managed to colonise almost all of the Arab World after defeating the Ottoman Empire in 1918, the United States was popular and respected throughout the Arab World. Indeed, Americans were seen as good people, untainted by the selfishness and duplicity associated with the Europeans. American missionaries had brought modern medicine and set up educational institutions all over the Arab World. Moreover, the US had provided the Arab World with highly skilled petroleum engineers. Thus, there were some connections, which were made between the United States and the Arab World before the Second World War. Other examples of corporations between the US and the Arab World are the Red Line Agreement signed in 1928 and the Anglo-American Petroleum Agreement signed in 1944. Both of these agreements were legally binding and reflected an American interest in control of Arab and Middle Eastern energy resources, namely oil, and moreover reflected an American security imperative to prevent the (re)emergence of a powerful regional rival. The Red Line Agreement had been part of a network of agreements made in the 1920s to restrict supply of petroleum and ensure that the major [mostly American] companies…could control oil prices on world markets. The Red Line agreement governed the development of Arab oil for the next two decades. The Anglo-American Petroleum Agreement of 1944 was based on negotiations between the United States and Britain over the control of Arab and Middle Eastern oil.

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 Uzbekistan

Arab League relations with Uzbekistan have been almost nonexistent until 2007. Then the Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa and the Uzbek president Islam Karimov have met to carry on discussions held previously in Cairo, for more Arab cooperation with Central Asia and more Central Asian support for Arab causes, such as Iraq, Sudan and Palestine.[20]

Foreign relations of member states

References

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "Summary of remarks by Javier SOLANA, EU High Representative for CFSP, at the 19th Arab League Summit. Riyadh, 28 March 2007" (PDF). Council of the European Union. http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ueDocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/en/discours/93397.pdf. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  3. ^ http://www.financialexpress.com/news/indiaarab-trade-to-rise-to-100-bn/393351/
  4. ^ http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2008/12/03/stories/2008120350710500.htm
  5. ^ a b c http://www.hindu.com/2008/11/10/stories/2008111060821400.htm
  6. ^ http://www.indianexpress.com/news/India-activates-first-listening-post-on-foreign-soil:-radars-in-Madagascar/205416/
  7. ^ http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/World/Indian_Naval_warships_on_4-day_goodwill_visit_to_Muscat/articleshow/2668177.cms
  8. ^ http://www.zeenews.com/nation/2008-11-12/482647news.html
  9. ^ http://www.kuwaittimes.net/read_news.php?newsid=NjM4NDM3MjY1
  10. ^ a b http://in.rediff.com/news/2006/jan/03uae.htm
  11. ^ http://www.indianexpress.com/oldstory.php?storyid=26845
  12. ^ a b http://www.rxpgnews.com/business/Indias-voice-can-help-Middle-East-peace-Arab-League_27395.shtml
  13. ^ http://www.indianexpress.com/oldstory.php?storyid=31270
  14. ^ http://www.hindu.com/2003/10/18/stories/2003101810552100.htm
  15. ^ http://en.baybak.com/qatar-mauritania-cut-ties-with-israel.azr
  16. ^ http://archive.gulfnews.com/indepth/southasiaquake/puffs/mid_left/10001076.html
  17. ^ http://www.middleeastprogress.org/2007/12/pakistan-saudi-arabia-ties/
  18. ^ http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_east/HD08Ak03.html
  19. ^ http://www.scramble.nl/pk.htm
  20. ^ League of Arab States (Arabic)

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