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API The Arab Peace Initiative

API cover

The Arab Peace Initiative

The Council of the League of Arab States at the Summit Level, at its 14th Ordinary Session,
– Reaffirming the resolution taken in June 1996 at the Cairo Extra-Ordinary Arab Summit that a just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East is the strategic option of the Arab Countries, to be achieved in accordance with International Legality, and which would require a comparable commitment on the part of the Israeli Government.
– Having listened to the statement made by His Royal Highness Prince Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, the Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in which his Highness presented his Initiative, calling for full Israeli withdrawal from all the Arab territories occupied since June 1967, in implementation of Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, reaffirmed by the Madrid Conference of 1991 and the land for peace principle, and Israel’s acceptance of an independent Palestinian State, with East Jerusalem as its capital, in return for the establishment of normal relations in the context of a comprehensive peace with Israel.
– Emanating from the conviction of the Arab countries that a military solution to the conflict will not achieve peace or provide security for the parties, the council:

1. Requests Israel to reconsider its policies and declare that a just peace is its strategic option as well.

2. Further calls upon Israel to affirm:
a. Full Israeli withdrawal from all the territories occupied since 1967, including the Syrian Golan Heights to the lines of June 4, 1967 as well as the remaining occupied Lebanese territories in the south of Lebanon.
b. Achievement of a just solution to the Palestinian Refugee problem to be agreed upon in accordance with UN General Assembly Resolution 194.
c. The acceptance of the establishment of a Sovereign Independent Palestinian State on the Palestinian territories occupied since the 4th of June 1967 in the West Bank and Gaza strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

3. Consequently, the Arab Countries affirm the following:

a. Consider the Arab-Israeli conflict ended, and enter into a peace agreement with Israel, and provide security for all the states of the region.
b. Establish normal relations with Israel in the context of this comprehensive peace.

4. Assures the rejection of all forms of Palestinian resettlement which conflict with the special circumstances of the Arab host countries.

5. Calls upon the Government of Israel and all Israelis to accept this initiative in order to safeguard the prospects for peace and stop the further shedding of blood, enabling the Arab Countries and Israel to live in peace and good neighborliness and provide future generations with security, stability, and prosperity.

6. Invites the International Community and all countries and Organizations to support this initiative.

7. Requests the Chairman of the Summit to form a special committee composed of some of its concerned member states and the Secretary General of the League of Arab States to pursue the necessary contacts to gain support for this initiative at all levels, particularly from the United Nations, the Security Council, the United States of America, the Russian Federation, the Muslim States and the European Union.
Arab Summit Resolution 14/221 – Beirut

Arab Peace Initiative was presented by HRH, then,Prince Abdullah Bin Abdel Aziz, now King of Saudi Arabia,  and endorsed by the 22 member States of the Arab League during Beirut Summit 2002 . The API offered a historical & unprecedented opportunity to achieve a just , comprehensive and durable peace in the Middle East -being a strategic choice for the Arab World- based on international legality………Read more <<

Arab Charter on Human Rights

arab human rights charter

Adopted by the Arab League “Summit Council” in Tunis on May 23rd of  2004; The Arab Charter on Human Rights seeks, within the context of the national identity of the Arab states and their sense of belonging to a common civilization, to place human rights at the center of the key national concerns of Arab states, to teach the human person in the Arab states pride in his identity and attachment to his land…Read more>>>>

Arab American Almanac, 6th edition. A comprehensive reference book about Arab Americans


The Arab American Almanac, 6th Edition, is the most comprehensive reference book on the Arab American community dedicated to preserve and disseminate Arab American history and culture, enhancing and building better understanding of Americans of Arab descent. The Almanac is published and sponsored by Joseph R. Haiek, president and founder of the Arab American Historical Foundation in Los Angeles, since 1978, who is also the publisher of The News Circle Publishing House since 1972. www.ArabAmericanHistory.org

The Washington Report

WRMEA May 2013 cover

The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs is a 100-page magazine published 9 times per year in Washington, DC, that focuses on news and analysis from and about the Middle East and U.S. policy in that region.

The Washington Report is published by the American Educational Trust (AET), a non-profit foundation incorporated in Washington, DC by retired U.S. foreign service officers to provide the American public with balanced and accurate information concerning U.S. relations with Middle Eastern states.

Who Are The Arabs?

Philip the Arab • John of Damascus • Al-Kindi • Al-Khansa Faisal I of Iraq•
Gamal Abdel Nasser • Asmahan • May Ziade

Arabs are descendants of the Semitic race.  The original Arabs lived in the Arabian Peninsula, either as town-dwellers or as nomad bedouins.  Brave and enterprising by nature, waves of these determined, resilient people migrated beyond the confines of the Peninsula and settled a vast area stretching from the Nile to the Tigris and Euphrates basin.  When, in the seventh century, the Arab Empire began to grow in size and strength, other peoples of these newly-conquered lands became gradually “Arabized, bringing their own unique backgrounds, cultures, and identities into the Arab mesh-work.

Today, the Arabs form a multi-religious nation where individuals of different creeds and sects live side by side in harmony.  Not all Arabs are Muslims and not all Muslims are Arabs.  An Arab can be a member of any religious dogma or sect thereof.  Just as the Arab people are free to profess whatever faith they may wish, the term Arab should be free of any conflation with, and/or limitation to, the Islamic denomination alone.

The best definition of an Arab is: one who, considering him/herself a member of the Arab Nation, shares a common a common heritage, language, and culture with the people of that nation.

For additional information, explore our Culture, Arabic Language,

Art, Literature, and Arab-American pages


The Arab World is the cradle of the great monotheistic religions and the birthplace of many ancient civilizations– among them the Egyptians, Sumerians, Babylonians, Canaanites, and Phoenicians.  Hence, the Arabs are very proud of their illustrious histories and their extremely rich cultural heritage.

The Arab World has come under the direct or indirect influence of many peoples, including the Persians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, European Crusaders, Ottomans and, more recently, the British, French and Italians.  Over the course of these various interactions, the Arab peoples have responded not by integrating at the cost of their own identity, but by selecting the best aspects of each contact for incorporation into their own beautiful, distinctive cultural kaleidoscope.

For instance, over the years, the Arabs have acted as preservers of the ancient Greek and Hellenistic cultures and original contributors in the fields of Mathematics, science and philosophy.  From the seventh to the twelfth centuries A.D., Arab supremacy in cultural and scientific fields was undisputed and unrivaled in the rest of the world.

Arab scientists made unparalleled discoveries in fields that span from medicine and pharmacology, to astronomy, chemistry, and optics.  Arab theorists and scholars translated philosophical tracts from Greek, developing and enriching the texts through the addition of their own unique, insightful thoughts, reflections, and comments.  Arab geographers and historians traveled across distant lands, illustrating maps of new territories and offering rich, unprecedented descriptions of new peoples.

The Arab nation is an indispensable part of the world nation; it is a vital component, and nothing less than an essential,  foundational base.  Arabs may be but one sect of society, with one specific manner of speech, one heritage, and one culture, but to assume the seclusion of those attributes from the greater human fabric is to lose sight of the complete work’s full magnificence.

The Arab people are certainly an ancient one, but they are contemporary as well.    The core Arab identity has changed very little since the Arab peoples’ humble beginnings, and the characteristic  adventurism, ingenuity, and ability to endure, have remained constant throughout their history.  Thus, the Arab World is still a reservoir of immense skill and potential, and everyday finds better, increasingly innovative ways to apply and utilize each.  Today, Arabs are increasingly assuming the natural role assigned to them as the link between West, East, North, and South; they are taking great initiative in setting new standards for modern art, literature, and film; and, above all else, they are once again unveiling their true identity as one of the great, integral peoples of our global society.



Arab League Mission to the Washington, D.C.
1100 17th Street, NW/ Suite 602/ Washington DC. 20036
Telephone- (202) 265-3210



Arab Art:

“Art has always been the finest product of human activities and the brightest side of any nation’s life.  In any civilization, art work, like poetry and literature, has always been a true reflection of man’s feeling towards his surroundings, his fellowmen, and mainly his homeland.  In the Arab World, artistic achievements were no exception.  Through history, art has played, and continues to play, a special role.”
-Ghassan Masri-Zada


Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art– “Sanjjil: A Century of Modern Art”
Our inaugural exhibition is a remarkable, comprehensive cross-section of art from the Arab world produced over the last hundred years. Sajjil means‘Act of Recording’ and it brings together over 200 artworks from Mathaf’s extensive collection. Here you will find turning-points in artistic thought as it evolved in the Arab world during the century leading up to the 1990s.

The exhibition creates a space for many different stories and experiences and helps set Arab modern art in its historical place within a larger art-history tradition. It also emphasizes the several common moments and concerns that make it possible to talk about a shared identity in the region.

Sajjil is divided into ten themed categories: nature; the city; individualism; form and abstraction; society; family; history and myth; struggle; huroufiyah (’abstract letterform art’) and Doha. Many elements of the art recur across time, space and historical interruptions.

– Dr. Nada Shabout,Wassan al-Khudhairi and Deena Chalabi






Traditional reluctance to represent the human figure gave birth to a distinctive and elaborate Arab art. Thus, Arab artistic genius expressed itself in decorative geometrical patterns and several varieties of calligraphic motifs, more abstract than figurative.

Not only is Islamic architecture spacious and functional, but it is subtle in forms, with symmetrical and decorative interiors.  Examples of Arab/Islamic architectural genius are Alhambra Palace in Granada and the Great Mosque of Cordoba (as seen in the image to the left), the Sultan Hasan Madrasah in Cairo, and the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem.


As recent studies reveal, the Islamic book was decorated with paintings very early on in its history. Minimally at the outset, the paintings gradually gained in importance within the heart of the codex. What examples remain suggest that the Koran was the first text in Arabic to have illuminations. Very early on, however, the libraries of the Islamic world were subjected to the great upheavals of history and the little that remains of such a splendid heritage makes it very difficult to reach any definite or general conclusion. Major discoveries, such as the thousands of fragments of the Koran found in the Sanaa mosque in the 1970s have, nevertheless, opened up new perspectives in the history of the illuminated codex of the Arab-Muslim world. Some of these fragments, which can be dated from the second half of the 7th century, contain illuminations that confirm the importance of the late classical heritage, as well as the later Byzantine era, for the early centuries of Islam.


Arab League Mission to the Washington, D.C.
1100 17th Street, NW/ Suite 602/ Washington DC. 20036
Telephone- (202) 265-3210

Republic of Yemen



Country Facts

  • Full name: Republic of Yemen
  • Population: 24.3 million (UN, 2010)
  • Capital: Sanaa
  • Area: 536,869 sq km (207,286 sq miles)
  • Major language: Arabic
  • Major religion: Islam
  • Life expectancy: 63 years (men), 67 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Yemeni riyal = 100 fils
  • Main exports: Crude oil, cotton, coffee, fish
  • GNI per capita: US $1,060 (World Bank, 2009)
  • Internet domain: .ye
  • International dialing code: 967

United Arab Emirates



Country Facts

  • Full name: United Arab Emirates
  • Population: 4.7 million (UN, 2010)
  • Capital: Abu Dhabi
  • Largest city: Dubai
  • Area: 77,700 sq km (30,000 sq miles)
  • Major language: Arabic
  • Major religion: Islam
  • Life expectancy: 77 years (men), 79 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Dirham = 100 fils
  • Main exports: Oil, gas
  • GNI per capita:n/a
  • Internet domain: .ae
  • International dialing code: +971

Tunisian Republic



Country Facts

  • Full name: Tunisian Republic
  • Population: 10.4 million (UN, 2010)
  • Capital: Tunis
  • Area: 164,150 sq km (63,378 sq miles)
  • Major languages: Arabic (official); French
  • Major religion: Islam
  • Life expectancy: 73 years (men), 77 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Tunisian dinar (TD) = 1,000 millimes
  • Main exports: Agricultural products, textiles, oil
  • GNI per capita: US $3,720 (World Bank, 2009)
  • Internet domain: .tn
  • International dialing code: +216

Syrian Arab Republic




Country Facts

  • Full name: The Syrian Arab Republic
  • Population: 22.5 million (UN, 2010)
  • Capital: Damascus
  • Area: 185,180 sq km (71,498 sq miles)
  • Major language: Arabic
  • Major religions: Islam, Christianity
  • Life expectancy: 73 years (men), 77 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Syrian pound = 100 piastres
  • Main exports: Oil, gas
  • GNI per capita: US $2,410 (World Bank, 2009)
  • Internet domain: .sy
  • International dialing code: +963
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