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Encyclopedia > Middle East
The traditional Middle East and the G8's Greater Middle East
The traditional Middle East and the G8's Greater Middle East
Political & transportation map of the traditional Middle East today
Political & transportation map of the traditional Middle East today

The Middle East is a historical and political region of Africa-Eurasia with no clear definition. The term "Middle East" was popularized around 1900 by the British, and has been criticized for its loose definition. The Middle East traditionally includes countries or regions in Southwest Asia and parts of North Africa. The corresponding adjective to Middle East is Middle-Eastern and the derived noun is Middle-Easterner. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1357x628, 40 KB) Summary Traditional and G8 greater middle east. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1357x628, 40 KB) Summary Traditional and G8 greater middle east. ... The traditional Middle East and the G8s Greater Middle East. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2973x2685, 1013 KB) Summary Courtesy of the University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin http://www. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2973x2685, 1013 KB) Summary Courtesy of the University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin http://www. ... Historical Geography is the study of the: Human Physical Fictional Theoretical and Real geographies of the past. ... Politics is the process by which groups make decisions. ... Africa-Eurasia The supercontinent of Africa-Eurasia, or Afro-Eurasia, is the worlds largest land mass and contains around 85% of the human population. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent, generally divided by the formidable barrier of the Sahara from Sub-Saharan Africa. ...


The history of the Middle East dates back to ancient times, and throughout its history the Middle East has been a major center of world affairs. The Middle East generally has an arid and hot climate, with several major rivers providing for irrigation to support agriculture in limited areas. Many countries located around the Persian Gulf have large quantities of crude oil. In modern times, the Middle East remains a strategically, economically, politically, culturally, and religiously sensitive region. This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East. ... For the span of recorded history starting roughly 5,000-5,500 years ago, see Ancient history. ... An arid environment has a high precipitation deficit, receiving much less precipitation annually than would satisfy the climatological demand for evaporation and transpiration. ... High-altitude aerial view of irrigation in the Heart of the Sahara ( ) Irrigation is the replacement or supplementation of rainfall with water from another source in order to grow crops or plants. ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... Pumpjack pumping an oil well near Sarnia, Ontario Petroleum (from Greek petra – rock and elaion – oil or Latin oleum – oil ) or crude oil is a thick, dark brown or greenish liquid. ...

Contents

Etymology

The term "Middle East" may have originated in the 1850s in the British India Office,[1] and became more widely known when American naval strategist Alfred Thayer Mahan used the term.[2] During this time the British and Russian Empires were vying for influence in Central Asia, a rivalry which would become known as The Great Game. Mahan realized not only the strategic importance of the region, but also of its center, the Persian Gulf.[3][4] He labeled the area surrounding the Persian Gulf as the Middle East, and said that after the Suez Canal, it was the most important passage for Britain to control in order to keep the Russians from advancing towards India.[5] Mahan first used the term in his article "The Persian Gulf and International Relations", published in September 1902 in the National Review, a British journal. The India Office was the British government department responsible for the government of British India. ... Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (September 27, 1840 - December 1, 1914) was a United States Navy officer, geostrategist, and educator. ... Anthem: God Save the Tsar! The Russian Empire in 1914 Capital Saint Petersburg Language(s) Russian Government Monarchy Emperor  - 1721-1725 Peter the Great (first)  - 1894-1917 Nicholas II (last) History  - Established 22 October, 1721  - February Revolution 2 April, 1917 Area  - 1897 22,400,000 km2 8,648,688 sq... Map of Central Asia showing three sets of possible boundaries for the region Central Asia located as a region of the world Central Asia is a vast landlocked region of Asia. ... Central Asia, circa 1848 The Great Game is a term, usually attributed to Arthur Conolly, used to describe the rivalry and strategic conflict between the British Empire and the Tsarist Russian Empire for supremacy in Central Asia. ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... Ships moored at El Ballah during transit Egypt: Site of Suez Canal (top). ... Not to be confused with the present-day American publication of the same name, National Review was launched in 1883 as a platform for the British Conservative Party. ...

The Middle East, if I may adopt a term which I have not seen, will some day need its Malta, as well as its Gibraltar; it does not follow that either will be in the Gulf. Naval force has the quality of mobility which carries with it the privilege of temporary absences; but it needs to find on every scene of operation established bases of refit, of supply, and in case of disaster, of security. The British Navy should have the facility to concentrate in force if occasion arise, about Aden, India, and the Gulf.[6]

Mahan's article was reprinted in The Times and followed in October by a 20 article series entitled "The Middle Eastern Question", written by Sir Ignatius Valentine Chirol. During this series, Chirol expanded the definition of the "Middle East" to include "those regions of Asia which extend to the borders of India or command the approaches to India."[7] With the series end in 1903, The Times removed quotation marks from subsequent uses of the term.[8] Alfred Thayer Mahan (pre-1914 photograph) This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 70 years or less. ... Alfred Thayer Mahan (pre-1914 photograph) This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 70 years or less. ... Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (September 27, 1840 - December 1, 1914) was a United States Navy officer, geostrategist, and educator. ... The Times is a national newspaper published daily in the United Kingdom since 1785, and under its current name since 1788. ... Sir Ignatius Valentine Chirol (28 May 1852 – 22 October 1929) was a journalist, prolific author, historian and British diplomat. ...


Until World War II, it was customary to refer to areas centered around Turkey and the eastern shore of the Mediterranean as the Near East, while the Far East centered on China.[9] The Middle East then meant the area from Mesopotamia to Burma, namely the area between the Near East and the Far East. The sense described in this article evolved during the war, perhaps influenced by the ancient idea of the Mediterranean as the "sea in the middle". Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... The Near East is a term commonly used by archaeologists, geographers and historians, less commonly by journalists and commentators, to refer to the region encompassing the Levant (modern Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon), Turkey, Mesopotamia (Iraq and eastern Syria). ... The far east as a cultural block includes East Asia, Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia and South Asia. ... Mesopotamia refers to the region now occupied by modern Iraq, eastern Syria, southeastern Turkey, and Southwest Iran. ...


One widely used definition of the "Middle East" is that of the airline industry, maintained by the IATA standards organization. This definition — as of early 2007 — includes Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Palestinian territories, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somaliland, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan and Yemen.[10] This definition is used in world-wide airfare and tax calculations for passengers and cargo. A Boeing 747-400 belonging to Virgin Atlantic Airways, one of the UKs largest airlines. ... The International Air Transport Association is an international trade organisation of airlines headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... This article is about the Palestinian territories as a geopolitical phenomenon. ... Motto: لا إله إلا الله محمد رسول الله  (Arabic) Lā ilāhā illā-llāhu; muhammadun rasÅ«lu-llāhi  (transliteration) There is no God but Allah; Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah And also : Justice, Peace, Freedom, Democracy and Success for All Anthem: Saamo ku waar Capital Hargeisa (1941-1960, 1991 - present) Official languages Somali, Arabic... A fare is the fee paid by a traveller allowing him or her to make use of a public transport system: rail, bus, taxi, etc. ... A tax is a financial charge or other levy imposed on an individual or a legal entity by a state or a functional equivalent of a state (for example, tribes, secessionist movements or revolutionary movements). ...


Criticism and usage

Many have criticized the term Middle East for what they see as Eurocentrism,[11][12] because it was originally used by Europeans (although Alfred Mahan was American) and reflects the geographical position of the region from a European perspective. It is also criticized due to the fact that the term today is often used to only refer to the Arab world, making the situation more confused. Eurocentrism is the practice, conscious or otherwise, of placing emphasis on European (and, generally, Western) concerns, culture and values at the expense of those of other cultures. ... Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (27 September 1840 - 1 December 1914) was a United States Navy officer, naval strategist, and educator, widely considered the foremost theorist of sea power. ...


Today the term is used by Europeans and non-Europeans alike, unlike the similar term Mashreq, used exclusively in Arabic-language contexts. The region is only east from the perspective of Europe. To an Indian, it lies to the west; to a Russian, it lies to the south. The description Middle has also led to some confusion over changing definitions. Before the First World War, Near East was used in English to refer to the Balkans and the Ottoman Empire, while Middle East referred to Persia, Kurdistan, Afghanistan, present day Pakistan and Central Asia, Turkistan and the Caucasus. In contrast, Far East refers to the countries of East Asia, e.g. China, Japan, Koreas, Hong Kong (China), Taiwan, etc. Such critics usually advise using an alternative term, such as "West Asia". The official UN designation of the area is "Southwest Asia". The Mashriq or Mashreq (Arabic: مشرق) is the region of Arabic-speaking countries to the east of Egypt. ... Combatants Allied Powers: Russian Empire France British Empire Italy United States Central Powers: Austria-Hungary German Empire Ottoman Empire Bulgaria Commanders Nikolay II Aleksey Brusilov Georges Clemenceau Joseph Joffre Ferdinand Foch Robert Nivelle Herbert H. Asquith D. Lloyd George Sir Douglas Haig Sir John Jellicoe Victor Emmanuel III Luigi Cadorna... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Motto: دولت ابد مدت Devlet-i Ebed-müddet (The Eternal State) Anthem: Ottoman imperial anthem Borders in 1680, see: list of territories Capital Söğüt (1299-1326) Bursa (1326-1365) Edirne (1365-1453) Constantinople (Istanbul) (1453-1922) Language(s) Ottoman Turkish Government Monarchy Sultans  - 1281–1326 Osman I  - 1918–1922 Mehmed VI... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles. ... Kurdistan (literally meaning the land of Kurds[1]; old: Koordistan, Curdistan, Kurdia, also in Kurdish: Kurdewarî) is the name of a geographic and cultural region in the Middle East, inhabited predominantly by the Kurds. ... Map of Central Asia showing three sets of possible boundaries for the region Central Asia located as a region of the world Central Asia is a vast landlocked region of Asia. ... Türkistan (also spelled Turkistan or Turkestan) is a region in Central Asia, largely inhabited by Turkic people. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ... The far east as a cultural block includes East Asia, Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia and South Asia. ... This article is about the United Nations, for other uses of UN see UN (disambiguation) Official languages English, French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Arabic Secretary-General Kofi Annan (since 1997) Established October 24, 1945 Member states 191 Headquarters New York City, NY, USA Official site http://www. ...


With the disappearance of the Ottoman Turkish Empire in 1918, Near East largely fell out of common use in English, while Middle East came to be applied to the re-emerging countries of the Islamic world. However, the usage of Near East was retained by a variety of academic disciplines, including archaeology and ancient history, where it describes an area identical to the term Middle East, which is not used by these disciplines (see Ancient Near East). So in shorter words, the term Middle East came about when the UK/French part of the world used the term. 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... The Near East is a term commonly used by archaeologists, geographers and historians, less commonly by journalists and commentators, to refer to the region encompassing the Levant (modern Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon), Turkey, Mesopotamia (Iraq and eastern Syria). ... The Islamic world is the world-wide community of those who identify with Islam, known as Muslims, and who number approximately one-and-a-half billion people. ... The Near East is a term commonly used by archaeologists, geographers and historians, less commonly by journalists and commentators, to refer to the region encompassing the Levant (modern Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon), Turkey, Mesopotamia (Iraq and eastern Syria). ... Archaeology, archeology, or archæology (from the Greek words αρχαίος = ancient and λόγος = word/speech/discourse) is the study of human cultures through the recovery, documentation and analysis of material remains and environmental data, including architecture, artefacts, biofacts, human remains, and landscapes. ... Ancient history is the study of the written past from the beginning of human history until the Early Middle Ages. ... Overview map of the Ancient Near East The term Ancient Near East or Ancient Orient encompasses the early civilizations predating Classical Antiquity in the region roughly corresponding to that described by the modern term Middle East (Egypt, Iraq, Turkey), during the time roughly spanning the Bronze Age from the rise...


The Eisenhower Doctrine, a 1957 policy of the United States government, was the first to officially use the term Middle East.[9] Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles defined the Middle East as "the area lying between and including Libya on the west and Pakistan on the east and Turkey on the North and the Arabian peninsula to the south, plus the Sudan and Ethiopia."[9] In 1958, the State Department explained that the terms "Near East" and "Middle East" were interchangeable, and defined the region as including only Egypt, Syria, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar.[13] The Eisenhower Doctrine, given in a message to Congress on January 5, 1957 stated the United States would use armed forces upon request in response to imminent or actual aggression to the United States. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      The government of the United States of America, established by the U.S. Constitution, is... John Foster Dulles (February 25, 1888 – May 24, 1959) was an American statesman who served as Secretary of State under President Dwight D. Eisenhower from 1953 to 1959. ... The United States Department of State, often referred to as the State Department, is the Cabinet-level foreign affairs agency of the United States Government, equivalent to foreign ministries in other countries. ... The Near East is a term commonly used by archaeologists, geographers and historians, less commonly by journalists and commentators, to refer to the region encompassing the Levant (modern Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon), Turkey, Mesopotamia (Iraq and eastern Syria). ...


The Associated Press Stylebook says that Near East formerly referred to the farther west countries while Middle East referred to the eastern ones, but that now they are synonymous. It instructs: The Associated Press, or AP, is an American news agency, the worlds largest such organization. ...

Use Middle East unless Near East is used by a source in a story. Mideast is also acceptable, but Middle East is preferred.[14]

Translations

There are terms similar to "Near East" and "Middle East" in other European languages, but since it is a relative description, the meanings depend on the country and are different from the English terms generally. In German the term "Naher Osten" (Near East) is still in common use (although nowadays the term "Mittlerer Osten" is more and more common) and in Russian Ближний Восток or "Blizhniy Vostok" (Near East), Bulgarian Близкия Изток (Near East) or Polish Bliski Wschód remains as the only appropriate term for the region. However, some languages do have "Middle East" equivalents, such as the French Moyen-Orient and the Italian Medio Oriente.


Perhaps due to the influence of the Western press, the Arabic equivalent of “Middle East,” “‫الشرق الأوسط‬” (“ash-sharq al-’awsaT”), has become standard usage in the mainstream Arabic press, comprehending the same meaning as the term “Middle East” in North American and Western European usage.


History

Main article: History of the Middle East

The Middle East (specifically, the Fertile Crescent) was the first center of agriculture (see history of agriculture), and therefore of civilization. It lies at the juncture of Eurasia and Africa and of the Mediterranean Sea and the Indian Ocean. It is the birthplace and spiritual center of the Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Yezidi, and in Iran, Mithraism, Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism, and the Bahá'í Faith. The Garden of Eden from the Book of Genesis is also thought to have been located between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers, making the Middle East the cradle of civilization. Thus throughout its history the Middle East has been a major center of world affairs; a strategically, economically, politically, culturally, and religiously sensitive area. This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East. ... The Fertile Crescent is a historical crescent-shape region in the Middle East incorporating the Levant, Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Cities are a major hallmark of human civilization. ... Eurasia African-Eurasian aspect of Earth Eurasia is a landmass covering about 54,000,000 km² compared with the Americas (approximately 42,000,000 km²), Africa (approximately 30,000,000 km²), Antarctica (approximately 13,000,000 km²) and Oceania (9,000,000 km²). Eurasia is composed of the traditional continents... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... Composite satellite image of the Mediterranean Sea. ... Look up spiritual in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Eastern Orthodox Church is a Christian body that views itself: as the historical continuation of the original Christian community established by Jesus Christ and the Twelve Apostles. ... Islam (Arabic:  ) is a monotheistic religion based upon the teachings of Muhammad, a 7th century Arab religious and political figure. ... Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people. ... The Yezidi or Yazidi (Kurdish; Êzidî) are adherents of a small Middle Eastern religion with ancient origins. ... Mithras and the Bull: This fresco from the mithraeum at Marino, Italy (third century) shows the tauroctony and the celestial lining of Mithras cape Mithraism was a mystery religion practiced throughout the Roman Empire. ... Zoroastrianism (Avestan Daênâ Vañuhi the good religion)[1][2] is the religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). ... Manichean priests, writing at their desk, with panel inscription in Sogdian. ... Seat of the Universal House of Justice in Haifa, Israel, governing body of the Baháís The Baháí Faith is a religion founded by Baháulláh in 19th century Persia. ... The Fall of Man by Lucas Cranach, a 16th century German depiction of Eden The Garden of Eden (from Hebrew Gan Ä’den, גַּן עֵדֶן) (Arabic jannato aden جنة عدن) is described in the Book of Genesis as being the place where the first man, Adam, and the first woman, Eve, lived after they were... Genesis (Greek: Γένεσις, having the meanings of birth, creation, cause, beginning, source and origin) is the first book of the Torah (five books of Moses) and hence the first book of the Tanakh, part of the Hebrew Bible; it is also the first book of the Christian Old Testament. ... The Tigris is the eastern member of the pair of great rivers that define Mesopotamia, along with the Euphrates, which flows from the mountains of Anatolia through Iraq. ... Bold text For the song River Euphrates by the Pixies, see Surfer Rosa The Euphrates (IPA: /juːˈfreɪtiːz/; Greek: EuphrátÄ“s; Akkadian: Pu-rat-tu; Hebrew: פְּרָת PÄ•rāth; Syriac: Prâth; Arabic: الفرات Al-Furāt; Turkish: Fırat; Kurdish: فرهات, Firhat, Ferhat, Azeri: FÉ™rat) is the... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...

The Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
The Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

The modern Middle East began after World War I, when the Ottoman Empire, which was allied with the defeated Central Powers, was partitioned into a number of separate nations. Other defining events in this transformation included the establishment of Israel in 1948 and the departure of European powers, notably Britain and France. They were supplanted in some part by the rising influence of the United States. Image File history File links Jerusalem_kotel_mosque. ... Image File history File links Jerusalem_kotel_mosque. ... Combatants Allied Powers: Russian Empire France British Empire Italy United States Central Powers: Austria-Hungary German Empire Ottoman Empire Bulgaria Commanders Nikolay II Aleksey Brusilov Georges Clemenceau Joseph Joffre Ferdinand Foch Robert Nivelle Herbert H. Asquith D. Lloyd George Sir Douglas Haig Sir John Jellicoe Victor Emmanuel III Luigi Cadorna... Motto: دولت ابد مدت Devlet-i Ebed-müddet (The Eternal State) Anthem: Ottoman imperial anthem Borders in 1680, see: list of territories Capital Söğüt (1299-1326) Bursa (1326-1365) Edirne (1365-1453) Constantinople (Istanbul) (1453-1922) Language(s) Ottoman Turkish Government Monarchy Sultans  - 1281–1326 Osman I  - 1918–1922 Mehmed VI... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Triple Alliance. ... Partitioning of the Ottoman Empire is direct consequence of the World War I with the Ottomans involvement in the Middle Eastern theatre. ...


In the 20th century, the region's significant stocks of crude oil gave it new strategic and economic importance. Mass production of oil began around 1945, with Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait, Iraq, and the United Arab Emirates having large quantities of oil.[15] Estimated oil reserves, especially in Saudi Arabia and Iran, are some of the highest in the world, and the international oil cartel OPEC is dominated by Middle Eastern countries. (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... Pumpjack pumping an oil well near Sarnia, Ontario Petroleum (from Greek petra – rock and elaion – oil or Latin oleum – oil ) or crude oil is a thick, dark brown or greenish liquid. ... Logo The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is an international organization made up of Algeria, Angola, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Venezuela. ...


During the Cold War, the Middle East was a theater of ideological struggle between the two superpowers: the United States and the Soviet Union, as they competed to influence regional allies. Within this contextual framework, the United States sought to divert the Arab world from Soviet influence. Throughout the 20th and into the 21st century, the region has experienced both periods of relative peace and tolerance and periods of conflict and war. Current issues include the Iraq War, Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the Iranian nuclear program. For other uses, see Iraq war (disambiguation). ... Israel, with the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Golan Heights highlighted in green The Israeli-Palestinian conflict which is often claimed to be at the heart of the Arab-Israeli conflict, is an ongoing dispute between two peoples, Jewish Israelis and Arab Palestinians, that both claim the right to sovereignty... This article is about Irans nuclear power programme. ...

Further information: List of conflicts in the Middle East

In the last 60 years, there have been a number of conflicts in the Middle East. ...

Geography

Sana'a, the capital of Yemen, is located in a mountaineous region, and is designated a World Heritage Site for its architecture.
Sana'a, the capital of Yemen, is located in a mountaineous region, and is designated a World Heritage Site for its architecture.
City January
(Low)
January
(High)
July
(Low)
July
(High)
Amman 4°C 12°C 18°C 32°C
Baghdad 0°C 16°C 24°C 43°C
Cairo 8°C 18°C 21°C 36°C
Damascus 0°C 12°C 16°C 36°C
Dubai 15°C 23°C 30°C 39°C
Jerusalem 5°C 13°C 17°C 31°C
Riyadh 8°C 21°C 26°C 42°C
Tehran -3°C 7°C 22°C 37°C
Sources: BBC Weather and Weather.com
A political and geographical map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East.
A political and geographical map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East.

The Middle East defines a geographical area, but does not have precise defined borders. The most common and highly arbitrary definition includes: Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Many Western definitions of the "Middle East" — in both established reference books and common usage — define the region as "nations in Southwest Asia, from Afghanistan and Pakistan to Egypt." The inclusion of Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Turkey is sometimes contentious as they are not Arab states. Egypt, with its Sinai Peninsula in Asia, is often considered part of the Middle East, although most of the country lies geographically in North Africa. North African nations without Asian links, such as Libya, Tunisia and Algeria, are increasingly being called North African — as opposed to Middle Eastern (Pakistan to Egypt-Asia) — by international media outlets. However, North African countries can also be considered part of the Middle East. Somalia, an Islamic country in the East Africa, is, like Pakistan also considered part of the "Greater Middle East". Other countries that are sometimes included in this definition are those of the Caucasus region (Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia), Cyprus, and North Africa (the Maghreb). Like the situation of Iran, Pakistan and Turkey, the inclusion of these countries is controversial, and often more so because they are located far outside the arbitrary geographical boundaries of the Middle East. Sanaa, Yemen File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Sanaa, Yemen File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Sanaá (Arabic صنعاء, romanized as , and also known as Sana or Sanaa), population 1,303,000 (2000), is the capital of Yemen. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... For other meanings, see Amman (disambiguation) and Ammann. ... Baghdad (Arabic ) is the capital of Iraq and of Baghdad Governorate. ... Nickname: Al Qahirah (The Triumphant City) Egypt: Site of Cairo (top center) Coordinates: Government  - Governor Dr. Abdul Azim Wazir Area  - City 210 km²  (81. ... Damascus at sunset Damascus ( translit: Also commonly: الشام ash-Shām) is the largest city of Syria and is also the capital. ... Coordinates: Emirate Dubai Government  - Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Area [1]  - Metro 4,114 km² (1,588. ... Hebrew יְרוּשָׁלַיִם (Yerushalayim) (Standard) Yerushalayim or Yerushalaim Arabic commonly القـُدْس (Al-Quds); officially in Israel أورشليم القدس (Urshalim-Al-Quds) Name Meaning Hebrew: (see below), Arabic: The Holiness Government City District Jerusalem Population 724,000 (2006) Jurisdiction 123,000 dunams (123 km²) Jerusalem (Hebrew:  , Yerushaláyim or Yerushalaim; Arabic:  , al-Quds, the Holiness)[2... Riyadh (Arabic: ‎ ar-Riyāḍ) is the capital of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, located in Ar Riyad Province in the Najd region. ... Tehran (IPA: ; Persian: تهران Tehrān), population (as of 2006) 7,354,000 (metropolitan: 12,651,000), and a land area of 658 square kilometres (254 sq mi), is the capital city of Iran (Persia) and the center of Tehran Province. ... Download high resolution version (503x613, 112 KB)from CIAs world factbook This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Download high resolution version (503x613, 112 KB)from CIAs world factbook This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... The Holy Land or Palestine Showing not only the Old Kingdoms of Judea and Israel but also the 12 Tribes Distinctly, and Confirming Even the Diversity of the Locations of their Ancient Positions and Doing So as the Holy Scriptures Indicate, a geographic map from the studio of Tobiae Conradi... A definition is a form of words which states the meaning of a term. ... A reference work is a compendium of information, usually of a specific type, compiled in a book for ease of reference. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Sinai Peninsula, Gulf of Suez (west), Gulf of Aqaba (east) from Space Shuttle STS-40 For other uses of the word Sinai, please see: Sinai (disambiguation). ... World map showing the location of Asia. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent, generally divided by the formidable barrier of the Sahara from Sub-Saharan Africa. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent, generally divided by the formidable barrier of the Sahara from Sub-Saharan Africa. ...  Eastern Africa (UN subregion)  East African Community  Central African Federation (defunct)  geographic, including above East Africa or Eastern Africa is the easternmost region of the African continent, variably defined by geography or geopolitics. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent, generally divided by the formidable barrier of the Sahara from Sub-Saharan Africa. ... The Algerian bay (view from the west). ...


The Middle East primarily consists of arid and semi-arid, with grasslands, rangelands, and deserts.[16] Water shortages are a problem in many parts of the Middle East, with rapidly growing populations increasing demands for water, while salinization and pollution threaten water supplies.[16] Major rivers, including the Nile and the Euphrates, provide sources for irrigation water to support agriculture. An arid environment has a high precipitation deficit, receiving much less precipitation annually than would satisfy the climatological demand for evaporation and transpiration. ... Semi-arid generally describes regions that receive low annual rainfall (25 to 50 cm /10 to 20 in) and generally have scrub or grass vegetation. ... Grasslands are very generally open and continuous, fairly flat area of grass. ... Rangeland refers to a large, mostly unimproved section of land that is predominantly used for livestock grazing. ... This article is about arid terrain. ... Water shortage may refer either to natural or social topics, or both: Drought Water crisis Category: ... Soil salination results from the accumulation of free salts to such an extent that it leads to degradation of soils and vegetation. ... // Air pollution Motor vehicle emissions are likely the leading cause of air pollution. ... There is also Nile, a death metal band from South Carolina, USA. The Nile in Egypt Length 6 695 km Elevation of the source 1 134 m Average discharge 2 830 m³/s Area watershed 3 400 000 km² Origin Africa Mouth the Mediterranean Basin countries Uganda - Sudan - Egypt The... The Euphrates (the traditional Greek name for the river, which is in Old Persian Ufrat, Aramaic Prâth/Frot, in Arabic الفرات, in Turkish Fırat and in ancient Assyrian language Pu-rat-tu) is the westernmost of the two great rivers that define... High-altitude aerial view of irrigation in the Heart of the Sahara ( ) Irrigation is the replacement or supplementation of rainfall with water from another source in order to grow crops or plants. ...


Topography

While Middle East mainly contains areas with low relief, portions of Turkey, Iran, and Yemen include mountainous terrain. The Anatolian Plateau is sandwiched between the Pontus Mountains and Taurus Mountains in Turkey. Mount Ararat in Turkey rises to 5,165 meters, and the tallest in the region, Mount Damavand, located in Iran's Elburz Mountains rises to 5,610 meters.[17] The Zagros Mountains are located in Iran, in areas along its border with Iraq. The Central Plateau of Iran is divided into two drainage basins. The northern basin is Dasht-e Kavir (Great Salt Desert), and Dasht-e-Lut is the southern basin. Asia Minor lies east of the Bosporus, between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. ... The Pontic Mountains (Turkish Doğu Karadeniz Dağları) are a range of mountains in northern Turkey, whose eastern end extends into southeastern Georgia. ... Demirkazık Summit [IN CHINA] The Taurus Mountains (Turkish: Toros Dağları, also known as Ala-Dagh or Bulghar-Dagh) are a mountain range in the southeastern Anatolian plateau, from which the Euphrates (Turkish: Fırat) descends into Syria. ... Mount Ararat (Turkish: , Armenian: , Kurdish: , Greek: , Persian: ‎, Russian: , Hebrew: ‎, Tiberian Hebrew: ) is the tallest peak in Turkey. ... Mount Damāvand (In Persian: دماوند) also known as Donbavand, a dormant volcano, located in middle Alborz Range and adjacency of Vararoo , Sesang , Golezard and Mianrood, is the highest point in Iran (Persia) and is the highest peak in Middle East. ... Alborz Mountains underneath clouds seen from Tehran View of the Alborz range from near Tehran. ... The Zagros Mountains (Persian: رشته كوه زاگرس), (Kurdish: Çîyayên Zagrosê), make up Iran and Iraqs largest mountain range. ... This article includes a list of works cited but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ... Dasht-e Kavir desert: satellite photograph Dasht-e Kavir (دشت كوير in Persian), also known as Kavir-e Namak or Great Salt Desert is a large desert lying in the middle of the Iranian Plateau. ... As seen from space Dasht-e Lut, also spelled Dasht-i-Lut, is a large salt desert in southeastern Iran. ...


In Yemen, elevations exceed 3,700 meters in many areas, and highland areas extend north along the Red Sea coast and north into Lebanon. A fault-zone also exists along the Red Sea, with continental rifting creating trough-like topography with areas located well-below sea level.[18] The Dead Sea, located on the border between the West Bank, Israel, and Jordan, is situated at 418 m (1371 feet) below sea level, making it the lowest point on the surface of the Earth.[19] The term highland is used to denote any mountainous region or elevated mountainous plateau. ... Location of the Red Sea The Red Sea also known as Dead Sea is an inlet of the Indian Ocean between Africa and Asia. ... Geologic faults, fault lines or simply faults are planar rock fractures, which show evidence of relative movement. ... In geology, a rift is a place where the Earths lithosphere is expanding. ... In geology, a trough generally referrs to a depression that extends laterally over a distence, while being less steep than a trench. ... It has been suggested that Geomorphometry be merged into this article or section. ... For considerations of sea level change, in particular rise associated with possible global warming, see sea level rise. ... The Dead Sea ( Arabic: ‎, Hebrew: ‎)is the Earths lowest point not covered by ice, at 418 m (1371 feet) below sea level and falling[2], and the deepest hypersaline lake in the world, at 330 m (1083 feet) deep. ... This article describes extreme locations on Earth. ... Adjectives: Terrestrial, Terran, Telluric, Tellurian, Earthly Atmosphere Surface pressure: 101. ...


A large lowland belt is located on the Arabian Peninsula, from central Iraq, through Saudi Arabia, and to Oman and the Arabian Sea. The Euphrates and Tigris rivers cut through the lowland belt in Iraq and flow into the Persian Gulf. Rub'al KhāLī, one of the world's largest sand deserts, spans the southern third of the Arabian Peninsula in Saudi Arabia, parts of Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. Jebel al Akhdar is a small range of mountains located in northeastern Oman, bordering the Gulf of Oman. In physical geography, a lowland is any broad expanse of land with a general low level. ... The Arabian Peninsula The Arabian Peninsula (in Arabic: شبه الجزيرة العربية, or جزيرة العرب) is a peninsula in Southwest Asia at the junction of Africa and Asia consisting mainly of desert. ... Map of the Arabian Sea. ... Bold text For the song River Euphrates by the Pixies, see Surfer Rosa The Euphrates (IPA: /juːˈfreɪtiːz/; Greek: EuphrátÄ“s; Akkadian: Pu-rat-tu; Hebrew: פְּרָת PÄ•rāth; Syriac: Prâth; Arabic: الفرات Al-Furāt; Turkish: Fırat; Kurdish: فرهات, Firhat, Ferhat, Azeri: FÉ™rat) is the... The Tigris is the eastern member of the pair of great rivers that define Mesopotamia, along with the Euphrates, which flows from the mountains of Anatolia through Iraq. ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... The Rub al Khali (الربع الخالي), or Empty Quarter, is the largest sand desert in the world, encompassing the southern third of the Arabian Peninsula, including southern Saudi Arabia, and areas of Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. ... For the Jebel Akhdar region of Libya, see Jebel Akhdar (Libya) The Jebel Akhdar or Djebel Akhdar (Arabic for Green Mountains) is a mountainous region in Oman, rising to a height of 3075 meters. ... Gulf of Oman The Gulf of Oman (Arabic: خليج عمان; transliterated: khalÄ«j Ê¿umān, Persian: دریای عمان یا دریای پازس; transliterated: daryā-ye Ê¿omān,Pars) Persian sea is a strait that connects the Arabian Sea with the Persian Gulf; it is generally included as a branch of the Persian Gulf, not as an arm of...


Geology

Three major tectonic plates converge on the Middle East, including the African, Eurasian, and Arabian plates. The boundaries between the tectonic plates make up the Azores-Gibraltar Ridge, extending across North Africa, the Red Sea, and into Iran.[20] The Arabian Plate is moving northward into the Anatolian plate (Turkey) at the East Anatolian Fault,[21] and the boundary between the Aegean and Anatolian plate in eastern Turkey is also seismically active.[20] Bridge across the Álfagjá rift valley in southwest Iceland, the boundary of the Eurasian and North American continental tectonic plates. ...  The African plate, shown in pinkish-orange The African Plate is a tectonic plate covering the continent of Africa and extending westward to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. ...  The Eurasian plate, shown in green The Eurasian Plate is a tectonic plate covering Eurasia (a landmass consisting of the continents Europe and Asia) except that it does not cover the Indian subcontinent, the Arabian subcontinent, and the area east of the Verkhoyansk Range in East Siberia. ... The Arabian plate is shown in bright yellow on this map The Arabian Plate is a continental tectonic plate covering the Arabian peninsula and extending northward to Turkey. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent, generally divided by the formidable barrier of the Sahara from Sub-Saharan Africa. ... Location of the Red Sea The Red Sea also known as Dead Sea is an inlet of the Indian Ocean between Africa and Asia. ... The Anatolian Plate is a continential tectonic plate consisting primarily of the country of Turkey. ... Seismology (from the Greek seismos = earthquake and logos = word) is the scientific study of earthquakes and the movement of waves through the Earth. ...


Water resources

Desert in Qatar
Desert in Qatar

Several major aquifers provide water to large portions of the Middle East. In Saudi Arabia, two large aquifers of Palaeozoic and Triassic origins are located beneath the Jabal Tuwayq mountains and areas west to the Red Sea.[22] Cretaceous and Eocene-origin aquifers are located beneath large portions of central and eastern Saudi Arabia, including Wasia and Biyadh which contain amounts of both fresh water and saline water.[22] The Nubian aquifer system underlies large areas of North Africa.[22] The Great Manmade River project in Libya utilizes an extensive network of pipelines to transport water from the Nubian aquifer to its population centers. Recharge for these deep rock aquifers is on the order of thousands of years, thus the aquifers are essentially non-renewable resources.[23] Flood or furrow irrigation, as well as sprinkler methods, are extensively used for irrigation, covering nearly 9 million hectares across the Middle East for agriculture.[24] Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1544x1024, 212 KB) Summary I took this photo myself. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1544x1024, 212 KB) Summary I took this photo myself. ... An aquifer is an underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated materials (gravel, sand, silt, or clay) from which groundwater can be usefully extracted using a water well. ... Impact of a drop of water Water is a chemical substance that is essential to all known forms of life. ... The Palaeozoic is a major division of the geologic timescale, one of four geologic eras. ... The Triassic is a geologic period that extends from about 251 to 200 Ma (million years ago). ... The Cretaceous Period is one of the major divisions of the geologic timescale, reaching from the end of the Jurassic Period (i. ... The Eocene epoch (55. ... For the village on the Isle of Wight, see Freshwater, Isle of Wight. ... The Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System is located in the Eastern Sahara and north-eastern Africa. ... The Great Manmade River or Great Man-made River (GMR) is a network of pipes that supplies water to the Sahara Desert in Libya from a fossil aquifer in the Sahara. ... Recharge is the process where water moves downward from surface water to groundwater. ... Wyoming coal mine. ... High-altitude aerial view of irrigation in the Heart of the Sahara ( ) Irrigation is the replacement or supplementation of rainfall with water from another source in order to grow crops or plants. ...

Further information: Geography of Asia and Geography of Saudi Arabia

Asia is the central and eastern part of Eurasia, comprising approximately fifty countries. ... Location: Southwest Asia, largest country of Arabia, bordering the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea, north of Yemen. ...

Territories and regions

Name of region, with flag Area
(km²)
Population Population density
(per km²)
Capital GDP (Total) GDP (Per capita) Currency Government Official languages Coat of Arms
Bahrain 665 656,397 987.1 Manama $14.08 billion $20,500 Bahraini Dinar Constitutional monarchy Arabic
Flag of Egypt Egypt 1,001,449 82,982,364 74 Cairo $305.253 billion $4,317 Egyptian pound Semi-presidential republic Arabic
Flag of Iran Iran 1,648,195 70,049,262 42 Tehran $610.4 billion $8,900 Iranian rial Islamic Republic Persian
Flag of Iraq Iraq 437,072 24,001,816 54.9 Baghdad $89.8 billion $3,600 Iraqi dinar Parliamentary Democracy (Developing) Arabic, Kurdish
Israel 20,770 7,029,529 290.3 Jerusalem $177.3 billion $26,200 New Israeli Sheqel Parliamentary democracy (The only democracy) Hebrew, Arabic
Flag of Jordan Jordan 92,300 5,307,470 57.5 Amman $27.96 billion $4,825 Jordanian dinar Constitutional monarchy Arabic
Flag of Kuwait Kuwait 17,820 2,111,561 118.5 Kuwait City $88,7 billion $29,566 Kuwaiti dinar Constitutional Hereditary Arabic
Lebanon 10,400 3,677,780 353.6 Beirut $24.42 billion Lebanese lira Republic Arabic
Oman 212,460 2,713,462 12.8 Muscat $40.923 billion Rial Absolute monarchy Arabic
Qatar 11,437 793,341 69.4 Doha $37.85 billion Riyal Monarchy Arabic
Flag of Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia 1,960,582 23,513,330 12.0 Riyadh $576.4 billion Riyal Absolute monarchy Arabic
Flag of Syria Syria 185,180 17,155,814 92.6 Damascus $71.74 billion Syrian pound Presidential republic Arabic
Flag of United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates 82,880 2,445,989 29.5 Abu Dhabi $162.3 billion UAE dirham Federal Constitutional Monarchy Arabic
Flag of Yemen Yemen 527,970 18,701,257 35.4 Sanaá $19.480 billion Yemeni rial Republic Arabic

The definition of continental subregions in use by the United Nations. ... The Dannebrog, national flag of Denmark. ... This is a list of the countries of the world sorted by area. ... In politics, a capital (also called capital city or political capital — although the latter phrase has a second meaning based on an alternative sense of capital) is the principal city or town associated with a countrys government. ... An official language is a language that is given a unique status in the constitutions of countries, states, and other territories. ... A modern coat of arms is derived from the medi val practice of painting designs onto the shield and outer clothing of knights to enable them to be identified in battle, and later in tournaments. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Bahrain_(bordered). ... Bahrain from space, June 1996 Manama (Arabic: المنامة Al-Manāmah) is the capital city of Bahrain and is the countrys largest city with a population of approximately 155,000, roughly a quarter of countrys entire population. ... ISO 4217 Code BHD User(s) Bahrain Inflation 2. ... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Egypt. ... Nickname: Al Qahirah (The Triumphant City) Egypt: Site of Cairo (top center) Coordinates: Government  - Governor Dr. Abdul Azim Wazir Area  - City 210 km²  (81. ... ISO 4217 Code EGP User(s) Egypt Inflation 4. ... States with semi-presidential systems are shown in yellow The semi-presidential system is a system of government that features both a prime minister and a president who are active participants in the day to day functioning of government. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Iran. ... Tehran (IPA: ; Persian: تهران Tehrān), population (as of 2006) 7,354,000 (metropolitan: 12,651,000), and a land area of 658 square kilometres (254 sq mi), is the capital city of Iran (Persia) and the center of Tehran Province. ... ISO 4217 Code IRR User(s) Iran Inflation 15. ... An Islamic republic in its modern context has come to mean several different things, some contradictory to others. ... Look up Persian in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Image File history File links Coat_of_arms_of_Iran. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Iraq. ... Baghdad (Arabic ) is the capital of Iraq and of Baghdad Governorate. ... ISO 4217 Code IQD User(s) Iraq Inflation rate 33% Source The World Factbook, 2005 est. ... A parliamentary system, or parliamentarism, is distinguished by the executive branch of government being dependent on the direct or indirect support of the parliament, often expressed through a vote of confidence. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Kurdish may refer to: The Kurdish people The Kurdish language This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Image File history File links COA_of_Iraq. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Israel_(bordered). ... Hebrew יְרוּשָׁלַיִם (Yerushalayim) (Standard) Yerushalayim or Yerushalaim Arabic commonly القـُدْس (Al-Quds); officially in Israel أورشليم القدس (Urshalim-Al-Quds) Name Meaning Hebrew: (see below), Arabic: The Holiness Government City District Jerusalem Population 724,000 (2006) Jurisdiction 123,000 dunams (123 km²) Jerusalem (Hebrew:  , Yerushaláyim or Yerushalaim; Arabic:  , al-Quds, the Holiness)[2... 1 sheqel coin (1994–5). ... A parliamentary system, or parliamentarism, is distinguished by the executive branch of government being dependent on the direct or indirect support of the parliament, often expressed through a vote of confidence. ... The word Hebrew most likely means to cross over, referring to the Semitic people crossing over the Euphrates River. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links COA_of_Israel. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Jordan. ... For other meanings, see Amman (disambiguation) and Ammann. ... The Jordanian dinar (ISO 4217 code JOD) is the official currency of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the first official one in the State of Palestine. ... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Jordan_coa. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Kuwait. ... Kuwait City Kuwait City (also Al-Kuwait - الكويت), population 32,403 (2005 Census), is the capital of the emirate of Kuwait and part of the Al-Asimah governorate. ... ISO 4217 Code KWD User(s) Kuwait Inflation 3. ... For the scientific journal Heredity see Heredity (journal) Heredity (the adjective is hereditary) is the transfer of characters from parent to offspring, either through their genes or through the social institution called inheritance (for example, a title of nobility is passed from individual to individual according to relevant customs and... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (645x750, 47 KB) The Kuwaiti coat of arms represents the national bird, the falcon along with a dhow,an Arabic type of boat called Boom or AL-Boom which is a prominent symbol of Kuwaits fishing and pearl mining history. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Lebanon. ... For other uses, see Beirut (disambiguation). ... ISO 4217 Code LBP User(s) Lebanon Inflation 2. ... Forms of government Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      For other uses, see Republic (disambiguation). ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Lebanon_coa. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Oman_(bordered). ... Classification City Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said Area 3,500 km² [1] Population  - Total (2005)  - Density  - Oman calculated rank 646,024 [2] 184. ... Rial (ريال in Arabic, ریال in Persian) is the title of the official currency of Iran, Oman, and Yemen. ... This does not cite its references or sources. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Coa_Oman. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Qatar_(bordered). ... Doha (Arabic: ‎, translit: or ), population 400,051 (2005 census), is the capital of Qatar and is at , on the Persian Gulf. ... The riyal is the currency of Qatar (ISO 4217: QAR) and Saudi Arabia (SAR). ... Forms of government Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A monarchy, from the Greek μονος, one, and αρχειν, to rule, is a form of government that has a monarch as head of state. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links COA_of_Qatar. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Saudi_Arabia. ... Riyadh (Arabic: ‎ ar-Riyāḍ) is the capital of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, located in Ar Riyad Province in the Najd region. ... The riyal is the currency of Qatar (ISO 4217: QAR) and Saudi Arabia (SAR). ... This does not cite its references or sources. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Coat_of_arms_of_Saudi_Arabia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Syria. ... Damascus at sunset Damascus ( translit: Also commonly: الشام ash-Shām) is the largest city of Syria and is also the capital. ... ISO 4217 Code SYP User(s) Syria Subunit 1/100 piastre Symbol S£ [] Coins 1, 2, 5, 10, 25 pounds Banknotes 1, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 pounds Central bank Central Bank of Syria Website www. ... Republics with presidential systems are shown in blue A presidential system, or a congressional system, is a system of government of a republic where the executive branch is elected separately from the legislative. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Arab_Emirates. ... Abu Dhabi or Abu Zaby (Arabic language: أبوظبي) is the largest of the seven emirates that comprise the United Arab Emirates and was also the largest of the former Trucial States. ... The Dirham is the currency of the United Arab Emirates. ... The word federal in a general sense refers to the nature of an agreement between or among two or more states, nations, or other groups to merge into a union in which control of common affairs is held by a central authority created by and with the consent of the... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Coat_of_arms_of_United_Arab_Emirates. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Yemen. ... Sana (Arabic: , romanized as , and also known as Sanaa or Sanaa), population 1,747,627 (2004 census), is the capital of Yemen and the center of Sana Governorate. ... 1000 Yemeni Rial The rial or riyal is the currency of Yemen. ... Forms of government Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      For other uses, see Republic (disambiguation). ... Arabic can mean: From or related to Arabia From or related to the Arabs The Arabic language; see also Arabic grammar The Arabic alphabet, used for expressing the languages of Arabic, Persian, Malay ( Jawi), Kurdish, Panjabi, Pashto, Sindhi and Urdu, among others. ... Image File history File links Coat_of_Arm_of_Yemen. ...

Demographics

The Middle East is home to numerous ethnic groups, including Amhara, Arabs, Armenians, Bahraini, Egyptians, Berbers, Africans, Assyrians, Azeris, Druze, Georgians, Greeks, Jews, Kurds, Persians, Turks, Turkmen and the Somali. Amhara (አማራ) is an ethnic group in the central highlands of Ethiopia, numbering about 21 million, making up around 30% of the countrys population (estimates differ). ... Languages Arabic other languages (Arab minorities) Religions Predominantly Islam Some adherents of Druze, Judaism, Samaritan, Christianity Related ethnic groups Mizrachi Jews, Sephardi Jews, Ashkenazi Jews, Canaanites, other Semitic-speaking groups An Arab (Arabic: ‎; transliteration: ) is a member of a Semitic group of people whose cultural, linguistic, and in certain cases... The Berbers (also called Imazighen, free men, singular Amazigh) are an ethnic group indigenous to Northwest Africa, speaking the Berber languages of the Afroasiatic family. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Languages Assyrian, Chaldean, Turoyo Religions Christianity Related ethnic groups other Semitic peoples Assyrians are an ethnic group whose origins lie in what is today Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Syria, but who have migrated to the Caucasus, North America and Western Europe during the past century. ... Azerbaijanis or Azerbaijani Turks, are a Muslim people who number more than 25 million worldwide. ... Druze star The Druze or Druz (also known as Druse; Arabic: derzī or durzī درزي, pl. ... Languages Kurdish Religions Predominantly Sunni Muslim also some Shia, Yazidism, Yarsan, Judaism, Christianity Related ethnic groups other Iranian peoples (Talysh Baluch Gilak Bakhtiari Persians) The Kurds are an ethnic group who consider themselves to be indigenous to a region often referred to as Kurdistan, an area which includes adjacent parts... The Persians of Iran (officially named Persia by West until 1935 while still referred to as Persia by some) are an Iranian people who speak Persian (locally named Fârsi by native speakers) and often refer to themselves as ethnic Iranians as well. ...


Languages

Languages of the Middle East span many different families, including Indo-European, Afro-Asiatic, and Altaic. The Indo-European languages comprise a family of several hundred related languages and dialects [1], including most of the major languages of Europe, as well as many spoken in the Indian subcontinent (South Asia), the Iranian plateau (Southwest Asia), and Central Asia. ... The Afro-Asiatic languages constitute a language family with about 375 languages (SIL estimate) and more than 300 million speakers spread throughout North Africa, East Africa, the Sahel, and Southwest Asia (including some 200 million speakers of Arabic). ... Altaic is a proposed language family which includes 66 languages [1] spoken by about 348 million people, mostly in and around Central Asia and northeast Asia. ...


Arabic in its numerous varieties and Persian are most widely spoken in the region, with Arabic being the most widely spoken language in the Arab countries. Other languages spoken in the region include Armenian, Assyrian (a form of Aramaic), Azeri, Balochi or Baluchi, Berber languages, Circassian, Persian, Georgian, Hebrew in its numerous varieties, Kurdish, Luri, Turkic, Turkish, Greek and Urdu. In Turkey, Kurdish, Dimli (or Zaza), Azeri, Kabardiaz, and Gagauz languages are spoken, in addition to the Turkish language. Arabic ( or just ) is the largest living member of the Semitic language family in terms of speakers. ... Arabic ( or just ) is the largest living member of the Semitic language family in terms of speakers. ... Persian (Local names: فارسی Fârsi or پارسی Pârsi)* is an Indo-European language spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan as well as by minorities in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, India, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Southern Russia, neighboring countries, and elsewhere. ... Syriac ( Suryāyā) is an Eastern Aramaic language that was once spoken across much of the Fertile Crescent. ... Aramaic is a group of Semitic languages with a 3,000-year history. ... The Azerbaijani language, also called Azeri, Azari, Azeri Turkish, or Azerbaijani Turkish, is the official language of Republic of Azerbaijan. ... Balochi may refer to: Baloch people Balochi language This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... When referring to central asian peoples, Baluchi is an alernative spalling of Balochi (qv). ... The Berber languages (or Tamazight) are a group of closely related languages mainly spoken in Morocco and Algeria. ... Circassian language is used in a number of ways: as a synonym for the Adyghe language; as a synonym for the Kabardian language; as a term for a distinct language that includes both Adyghe and Kabardian. ... Persian (Local names: فارسی Fârsi or پارسی Pârsi)* is an Indo-European language spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan as well as by minorities in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, India, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Southern Russia, neighboring countries, and elsewhere. ... “Hebrew” redirects here. ... The Jewish languages are a set of languages that developed in various Jewish communities, in Europe, southern and south-western Asia, and northern Africa. ... The Kurdish language is a language spoken in the region called Kurdistan, including Kurdish populations in parts of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. ... Luri is a dialect of Persian language. ... This is the disambiguation page for the terms Turk, Turkey, Turkic, and Turkish. ... The phrase Zaban-e Urdu-e Mualla written in Urdu Urdu () is an Indo-European language of the Indo-Aryan family that developed under Persian, Turkish, Arabic, Hindi, and Sanskrit influence in South Asia during the Delhi Sultanate and Mughal Empire (1200-1800). ... Kurdish may refer to: The Kurdish people The Kurdish language This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Zazaki (Zazakî, Zazaish) or Dimli is a language closely related to the Persian and Kurdish languages, spoken by the Zaza in eastern Anatolia (Turkey), an ethnic minority related to the Iranians and Kurds. ... The Azeri, also referred to as Azerbaijanian Turks, are a Turkic-Muslim people. ... The Gagauz are a Turkic people minority of southern Moldova (in Gagauzia) and of southwestern Ukraine (in Budjak) that numbers around 250,000. ... Turkish () is a Turkic language, spoken mainly in Turkey, with smaller communities of speakers in Bulgaria,[3] the Republic of Macedonia,[4] Uzbekistan,[5] Cyprus,[6] Greece,[7] as well as by several million emigrants in Western Europe. ...


English is also spoken, especially among the middle and upper class, in countries such as Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Kuwait.[25][26] French is spoken in Algeria, Israel, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, and Egypt. Hindi and other Indian and South Asian languages are spoken in many Middle Eastern countries, such as the United Arab Emirates, Israel, and Qatar, which have large numbers of South Asian immigrants. The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... The middle class (or middle classes) comprises a social group once defined by exception as an intermediate social class between the nobility and the peasantry. ... Upper class refers to the group of people at the top of a social hierarchy. ... Hindi (Devanagari: हिन्दी or हिंदी; IPA: ), an Indo-European language spoken mainly in northern and central India, is one of the official languages of the Union government of India [1][2]. It is part of a dialect continuum of the Indic family, bounded on the northwest and west by Punjabi, Sindhi, Urdu... Map of South Asia South Asia is a subregion of Asia comprising the modern states of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, . It covers about 4,480,000 km², or 10 percent of the continent, and is also known as the Indian subcontinent. ...


Economy

Dubai skyline
Dubai skyline

A large volume of shipping passes through the Suez Canal, as goods and resources are transported between Europe, Asia, and Africa. Dubai is a major hub for shipping, as well as the financial industry. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2240x1680, 1746 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Middle East Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2240x1680, 1746 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Middle East Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to... Damaged package The Panama canal. ... Ships moored at El Ballah during transit Egypt: Site of Suez Canal (top). ... This article is very long. ... World map showing the location of Asia. ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... Coordinates: Emirate Dubai Government  - Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Area [1]  - Metro 4,114 km² (1,588. ... Finance addresses the ways in which individuals, business entities and other organizations allocate and use monetary resources over time. ...


Regions

There are many interpretations of the term the Middle East. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Topographic map of the Iranian plateau connecting to Anatolia in the west and Hindu Kush and Himalaya in the east The Iranian plateau is a major geologic formation in West Asia between Anatolian Plateau in the northwest and the Indian Subcontinent in the southeast. ... The Arabian Peninsula The Arabian Peninsula is a mainly desert peninsula in Southwest Asia at the junction of Africa and Asia and an important part of the greater Middle East. ... The Arabian Gulf States, also called the Gulf States (which may cause a confusion with the Gulf States of the United States, which are those along the Gulf of Mexico), are the countries in Southwest Asia or the Middle East which border the Arabian Gulf. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... The Levant The Levant (IPA: /ləvænt/) is an imprecise geographical term historically referring to a large area in the Middle East south of the Taurus Mountains, bounded by the Mediterranean Sea on the west, and by the northern Arabian Desert and Upper Mesopotamia to the east. ... The Mediterranean Sea is an intercontinental sea positioned between Europe to the north, Africa to the south and Asia to the east, covering an approximate area of 2. ...

Notes

  1. ^ Beaumont, Peter , Gerald H. Blake, J. Malcolm Wagstaff (1988). The Middle East: A Geographical Study. David Fulton, p.16. 
  2. ^ Koppes, C.R. (1976). "Captain Mahan, General Gordon and the origin of the term "Middle East"". Middle East Studies 12: p. 95-98. 
  3. ^ Melman, Billie. The Cambridge Companion to Travel Writing: 6 The Middle East / Arabia, Cambridge Collections Online. Retrieved January 8, 2006.
  4. ^ Palmer, Michael A. Guardians of the Gulf: A History of America's Expanding Role in the Persian Gulf, 1833-1992. New York: The Free Press, 1992. ISBN 0-02-923843-9 p. 12-13.
  5. ^ Laciner, Dr. Sedat. "Is There a Place Called ‘the Middle East’?", The Journal of Turkish Weekly]", June 2, 2006. Retrieved January 10, 2007.
  6. ^ Adelson, Roger. London and the Invention of the Middle East: Money, Power, and War, 1902-1922. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995. ISBN 0-300-06094-7 p. 22-23
  7. ^ Adelson, 24.
  8. ^ Adelson, 26.
  9. ^ a b c Davison, Roderic H. (1960). "Where is the Middle East?". Foreign Affairs 38: p. 665-675. 
  10. ^ Middle East, IATA. Retrieved January 10, 2007.
  11. ^ Shohat, Ella. Redrawing American Cartographies of Asia. City University of New York. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  12. ^ Hanafi, Hassan. The Middle East, in whose world?. Nordic Society for Middle Eastern Studies. Retrieved on 2007-01-12.
  13. ^ "'Near East' is Mideast, Washington Explains", The New York Times, August 14, 1958.
  14. ^ Goldstein, Norm. The Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law. New York: Basic Books, 2004. ISBN 0465004881 p. 156
  15. ^ Goldschmidt Jr., Arthur (1999). A Concise History of the Middle East. Westview Press, p.8. 
  16. ^ a b (1997) "Chapter 7: Middle East and Arid Asia", IPCC Special Report on The Regional Impacts of Climate Change: An Assessment of Vulnerability. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). 
  17. ^ Beaumont, Peter, Gerald H. Blake, J. Malcolm Wagstaff (1988). The Middle East: A Geographical Study. David Fulton, p. 19. 
  18. ^ Sweeney, Jerry J., William R. Walter. Preliminary Definition of Geophysical Regions for the Middle East and North Africa. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
  19. ^ ASTER Image Gallery: The Dead Sea. NASA.
  20. ^ a b Beaumont, Peter, Gerald H. Blake, J. Malcolm Wagstaff (1988). The Middle East: A Geographical Study. David Fulton, p. 22. 
  21. ^ Muehlberger, Bill. The Arabian Plate. NASA, Johnson Space Center.
  22. ^ a b c Beaumont, Peter, Gerald H. Blake, J. Malcolm Wagstaff (1988). The Middle East: A Geographical Study. David Fulton, p. 86. 
  23. ^ Beaumont, Peter, Gerald H. Blake, J. Malcolm Wagstaff (1988). The Middle East: A Geographical Study. David Fulton, p. 85. 
  24. ^ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
  25. ^ World Factbook - Jordan.
  26. ^ World Factbook - Kuwait.

2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 12 is the 12th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 12 is the 12th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...

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