The Arab league was formed of six member states on the 22nd of March 1945. The main reason for the establishment of the league was to protect interests and sovereignty of each member state. Moreover, international influence, mainly British, pushed for the united Arab nations so that Arab countries could help different states in their fight against Germans. The British intention was to exploitate rich oil reserve of the Arabian nations. The Arabs nations’ uniting was a favor for the British side. However, this idea was not well perceived by the member states who thought of uniting in order to protect themselves from exploitation from other nations. Currently, the league of Arab states has twenty two member states. Any other independent Arabic country who wishes to join the league has to write a letter to the secretary general which will be tabled on the first meeting after the letter has been received. Countries in the north of Africa, for instance Egypt and Sudan, and the Middle East countries form the composition of the league of Arabs nation. It is governed by a charter composed of twenty articles (Geoffrey 2005).
Highest governing body is articulated in the article three of the charter (Geoffrey 2005). According to the article each member state has one vote. For the ordinary session, the league meets twice a year (March and September), but any two member state can call for an extraordinary session. The league headquarters is in Cairo, Egypt. However, from 1987 till 1989 due to the Egypt peace treaty with Israel, the league headquarters was moved to Tunis, the city of Tunisia, but later was taken back to Egypt (Geoffrey 2005).
Compared with other regional organization such as the East African Community, the European Union or the Organization of American States, the league is based on cultural foundation rather than the member states’ geographical location. In addition, the league has not achieved a regional integration among its members state, but stands for Arabs unity and nationalism (Katleen et al. 2012).
The league is purposed to protect the independence of member states and to prevent the Jewish immigration to Palestine, so that they could not form a Jewish nation. Other functions of the league are to address the following matters to its member states, such as financial and economic matters including customs, trade, currency, industry and agriculture, communication networks for roads, aviation, navigation and telegraphs; culture, nationality, passports, visas, execution of judgments, social welfare and health matters (Geoffrey 2005).
Sixty seven years later, the Arab league has made several milestones in its agenda. Its achievements include the participation in restoring peace in Sudan (Salah 2008). Secondly, it pulled its member states to a common economic block (G.A.F.T.A, greater Arabic free trade area) to enable them to compete with other regions economically. Its coordination with African states is also of significance in cohesion and integration between the two regions (Felix 2008). In the United Nations fight against small arms, the league included the united nation recommendations in Arabic resolution No.6625 on Arabic coordination for combating the illicit trade as to the small arms and light weapons. The league also adapted a gas pipeline in Kuwait. Finally, the league first achievement, among other boardroom achievements, was to prevent Iraq from taking over Kuwait, as for the decisions that affect the league (Geoffrey 2005).
However, the league faces a lot of challenges from unrest and conflicts in its member states to food security of its people (Felix 2008). Most of the league countries have harsh and hostile environment to support farming. Internal conflict in Libya and political differences in Egypt is the main set back of the league (Ajish 2011). Currently Egypt is in a state of unrest following difference in the opinion over the draft constitution. This may lead Egypt back to battle among its populace, shaking the stability of the Arab league. Other conflict problem faced by the league is the Israeli Palestine conflict and Somali instability. In addition, charges facing Sudan President Omar Al Bashir in the international criminal justice at The Hague is also a setback of the league.