The Crisis In The Middle East

Arab League demands UN Peacekeepers in Palestine


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Arab League; its members

Mains level: NA

Why in the News?

The Arab League called for UN peacekeeping forces in the Palestinian territories during a summit in Bahrain’s Manama. The “Manama Declaration” issued by the league sought UNPKF in the occupied Palestinian territories” until a two-state solution is implemented.

Back2Basics: United Nations Peacekeeping

  • UN Peacekeeping is a collective effort by the international community, led by the United Nations, to maintain peace and security in regions affected by conflict.
  • UN peacekeepers are often referred to as Blue Berets or Blue Helmets because of their light blue berets or helmets) can include soldiers, police officers, and civilian personnel.


  • The concept of UN peacekeeping emerged in the aftermath of World War II, with the establishment of the United Nations in 1945.
  • The first UN peacekeeping mission was established in 1948, following the Arab-Israeli War, to monitor the ceasefire between Israel and its Arab neighbours.
    • This mission, known as the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO), set the precedent for future peacekeeping operations.
  • Since then, the scope and complexity of UN peacekeeping have evolved significantly, with operations conducted across the globe in regions affected by conflict, civil war, and humanitarian crises.


  • UN Peacekeeping is guided by three basic principles:
  1. Consent of the parties
  2. Impartiality
  3. Non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate
  • UN peacekeeping operations are deployed with the consent of the main parties to the conflict. It can be deployed at the request of the parties involved in a conflict or with the authorisation of the UN Security Council.
  • The objectives may vary depending on the specific context but often include monitoring ceasefires, disarming combatants, facilitating the delivery of humanitarian aid, promoting human rights, and supporting the establishment of democratic governance structures.
  • UN peacekeeping operations operate under the principles of impartiality, consent of the parties, and non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate.

India’s Role:

  • India has been one of the largest contributors to UN peacekeeping operations since their inception.
  • India has contributed nearly 195,000 troops, the largest number from any country, and participated in more than 49 missions and 168 supreme sacrifices while serving in UN missions.

About Arab League

Establishment Founded on March 22, 1945, in Cairo, Egypt.
Founding Members Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria.
Objective Promote economic, cultural, political, and military cooperation among member states. Safeguard independence and sovereignty.
  1. Operates on consensus among member states. Decisions are made through consultations and discussions.
  2. Regular meetings among Arab leaders to address regional issues, formulate policies, and coordinate actions.
  3. Specialised committees and councils address specific areas of cooperation, such as economic affairs, social affairs, and defence.
Member States Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Bahrain, Comoros, Djibouti, Kuwait, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.
Observer Nations
  • Non-Arab countries with observer status include Brazil, Eritrea, India, Venezuela, and others.
  • No voting rights are accorded to Observer nations.
Important Achievements
  • Proposal of the Arab Peace Initiative in 2002.
  • Coordination of military efforts in various conflicts.
  • Promotion of economic cooperation through initiatives such as the Arab Free Trade Area.
  • Facilitation of cultural and educational exchange programs among member states.
Challenges Internal divisions, Differences of opinion over the Palestinian-Israeli conflict etc.



[2014] Recently, a series of uprisings of people referred to as ‘Arab Spring’ originally started from

(a) Egypt

(b) Lebanon

(c) Syria

(d) Tunisia

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