Published in the Huffington Post on Mar. 1, 2012.
On February 23, Arab League chief Nabil ElAraby urged the United Nations Security Council to issue a ceasefire in Syria. This appeal comes 11 months after Bashar Assad began his brutal crackdown, which has taken the lives of more than 7,500 civilians.
What then, precisely is the purpose of the Arab League? Formed in 1945, Article II of the Arab League Charter states that its mission is to strengthen ties between member states and “safeguard their independence and sovereignty; and a general concern with the affairs and interests of the Arab countries.” While Articles V and VI stipulate that resorting to force between two or more member-states is prohibited and may lead to suspension from the League, there is no clause specifying appropriate action if a member-state oppresses its citizens. Continue reading “What is the Purpose of the Arab League?”