On this day March 22, 1945

Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Transjordan, and Yemen founded the Arab League, a regional organization that facilitates political, economic, cultural, scientific and social programs designed to promote the interests of the Arab world.

League of Arab States

League of Arab States

The Arab League currently has 22 members, Egypt’s membership was suspended in 1979 after it signed the Egyptian–Israeli Peace Treaty, and the League’s headquarters were moved from Cairo to Tunis.

In 1987, Arab countries restored diplomatic relations with Egypt and the country was readmitted to the league in 1989 while the league’s headquarters moved back to Cairo. In September 2006, Venezuela was accepted as an observer, and India in 2007.

The main goal of the league is to “draw closer the relations between member States and co-ordinate collaboration between them, to safeguard their independence and sovereignty, and to consider in a general way the affairs and interests of the Arab countries.”

Each member state has one vote in the League Council, while decisions are binding only for those states that have voted for them. The aims of the league in 1945 were to strengthen and coordinate the political, cultural, economic, and social programs of its members, and to mediate disputes among them or between them and third parties. Furthermore, the signing of an agreement on Joint Defense and Economic Cooperation on April 13, 1950 committed the signatories to coordination of military defense measures.

The Arab league has played an important role in shaping school curricula, advancing the role of women in the Arab societies, promoting child welfare, encouraging youth and sports programs, preserving Arab cultural heritage, and fostering cultural exchanges between the member states.

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