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Leaders of 22 Arab nations met in Kuwait in early spring for the annual Arab League Summit. The two-day meeting highlighted the growing number of disputes in the region.
BBC News Middle East analyst Gerald Butt noted: “In four decades of covering the Middle East I cannot remember the Arab world being as multilaterally fractured as it is today. Arabs are trapped under a dense and complex cat’s cradle of ideological and sectarian differences.”
Long-standing regional issues, which include Israel-Palestinian relations, disparate wealth distribution, youth unemployment, and a troubled education system, have increasingly become overshadowed by new challenges. These include lingering effects from the Arab Spring uprisings, the civil war in Syria, and the sustained rise of the Muslim Brotherhood.
A main reason for the disagreement is the leadership vacuum created by Egypt’s ongoing turmoil. Traditionally seen as the Arab League’s chief nation, Egypt has been focused on internal issues instead of those associated with its neighbors. No other nation has stepped in to fill the void.