Facts about Arabs and the Arab World

Shakira, Doug Flutie, Kathy Najimy, George Mitchell, Salma Hayek, Spencer AbrahamWho is an Arab?

"Arab" is a cultural and linguistic term. It refers to those who speak Arabic as their first language. Arabs are united by culture and by history. Arabs are not a race. Some have blue eyes and red hair; others are dark skinned; many are somewhere in between. Most Arabs are Muslims but there are also millions of Christian Arabs and thousands of Jewish Arabs, just as there are Muslim, Christian, and Jewish Americans.

What is the Arab World?

The Arab World consists of 22 countries in the Middle East and North Africa: Algeria, Bahrain, the Comoros Islands, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Mauritania, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Iran and Turkey are not Arab countries and their primary languages are Farsi and Turkish respectively. Arab countries have a rich diversity of ethnic, linguistic, and religious communities. These include Kurds, Armenians, Berbers and others. There are over 300 million Arabs.

What is the Muslim World?

There are an estimated 1.2 billion Muslims in the world. The Organization of Islamic Countries has 55 member states. The ten countries with the largest Muslim population are: Indonesia (170.3 million), Pakistan (136 million), Bangladesh (106 million), India (103 million), Turkey (62.4 million), Iran (60.7 million), Egypt (53.7 million), Nigeria (47.7 million) and China (37.1 million). Of these countries only Egypt is an Arab country. Most Arabs are Muslims, but most Muslims are not Arabs.

Who is a Muslim?

A Muslim is a follower of Islam. (