Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Is Iran an Arab country?

Despite what many people may think, Iran is not an Arab country. Iran may share a religion and political and economic interests with Arab countries, but the people of Iran are primarily Persians and speak Farsi and other Persian languages, not Arabic. Iran is not a member of the Arab League and not considered an Arab state by the United Nations Development Programme.

Accoring to the Wikipedia, the Arab League has 22 member states:

    1. Algeria
    2. Bahrain
    3. Comoros
    4. Djibouti
    5. Egypt
    6. Iraq
    7. Jordan
    8. Kuwait
    9. Lebanon
    10. Libya
    11. Mauritania
    12. Morocco
    13. Oman
    14. Palestine
    15. Qatar
    16. Saudi Arabia
    17. Somalia
    18. Sudan
    19. Syria
    20. Tunisia
    21. United Arab Emirates
    22. Yemen

The UNDP says that "The Arab States region is home to some 320 million people living in 22 countries that stretch from Morocco and Algeria in the west to Yemen and Oman in the east."

Iran is not in either definition of an Arab state/country.

-- Jack Krupansky

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