Pan-Arab colors

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Flag of the Arab Liberation, used in Egypt[1]
Flag map of the Arab World.

The Pan-Arab colours are black, white, green, and red. Individually, each of the four Pan-Arab colours were intended to represent a certain Arab dynasty, or era.[3] The black was the colour of the banner of Muhammad and the Rashidun Caliphate and was later adopted by the Abbasid Caliphate; white was used by the Umayyad Caliphate; green was used by the Fatimid Caliphate; and red was both the flag held by the Khawarij and also represented the Hashemites, as well as the Ottoman Empire.[4] The four colours derived their potency from a verse by 14th century Iraqi poet Safi Al-Din Al-Hilli: "White are our acts, black our battles, green our fields, and red our swords".[5]

Pan-Arab colours were first combined in 1916 in the flag of the Arab Revolt.[6] Many current flags are based on Arab Revolt colours, such as the flags of Jordan, Kuwait, Palestine, the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, and the United Arab Emirates,[7] and formerly in the flag of the brief six month union of the Arab Federation of Iraq and Jordan.

It may be noted that while Libya is an Arab country and has a flag with the same four colours, the colours have a different origin in this flag and are therefore not considered pan-Arab colours.[citation needed]

From the 1950s onwards, a sub-set of the Pan-Arab colours, the Arab Liberation colours, came to prominence. These consist of a tricolour of red, white and black bands, with green given less prominence. The Arab Liberation colours were inspired by the use of the Arab Liberation Flag in the Egyptian Revolution of 1952.[8][full citation needed] These appear in the current flags of Egypt, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, and formerly in the flags of the rival states of North Yemen and South Yemen, and in the short-lived Arab unions of the United Arab Republic and the Federation of Arab Republics.[7]

Current flags with Pan-Arab colours[edit]

UN member states[edit]

Unrecognized and partially recognized states[edit]

Former national flags with the Pan-Arab colours[edit]

Flags of Arab political and paramilitary movements using Pan-Arab colours[edit]

Historical Arab flags[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Pan-Arab Colours,
  2. ^ Mahdi Abdul-Hadi, The Great Arab Revolt,
  3. ^ Abū Khaldūn Sati' al-Husri, The days of Maysalūn: A Page from the Modern History of the Arabs, Sidney Glauser Trans., (Washington D.C.: Middle East Institute, 1966), 46.
  4. ^ Mahdi Abdul-Hadi, Palestine Facts: The Meaning of the Flag,
  5. ^ Muhsin Al-Musawi, Reading Iraq: Culture and Power in Conflict (I. B. Tauris 2006), p. 63
  6. ^ I. Friedman, British Pan-Arab Policy, 1915–1922, Transaction Publ., 2011, p.135
  7. ^ a b Znamierowski, Alfred (2003). Illustrated Book of Flags. Southwater. p. 123. ISBN 1842158813. Retrieved 22 November 2014. The designs of these flags were later modified, but the four pan-Arab colours were retained and were adopted by Transjordan (1921), Palestine (1922), Kuwait (1961), the United Arab Emirates (1971), Western Sahara (1976) and Somaliland (1996). 
  8. ^ M. Naguib Egypt's Destiny 1955
  9. ^ Also used as the flag of Fujairah since 1975
  10. ^ "Palestinian Law No. 5 for the year 2006 amending some provisions of Law No. 22 for the year 2005 on the Sanctity of the Palestinian Flag". Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  11. ^ a b Kingdom of Hejaz 1915-1925,
  12. ^ a b c d e Historical Flags Overview (Syria),
  13. ^ Ha'il (Saudi Arabia) - Emirate of 'Ha'il,
  14. ^ a b Historical Flags (Jordan),
  15. ^ Kingdom of Iraq (1924-1958),
  16. ^ a b Historical Flags (Palestine) ,
  17. ^ Arab Federation of Jordan and Iraq,
  18. ^ a b c Evolution of the Iraqi Flag, 1963-2008,
  19. ^ Mahdi Abdul-Hadi, Al-Muntadha al-Adhabi,
  20. ^ Mahdi Abdul-Hadi, Jam'yiat al-'Arabiya al-Fatat,
  21. ^ a b Al-Ahwaz (Khuzestan) Political Organizations (Iran) on
  22. ^ S. T. Al-Seyed Naama, Brief History of Ahwaz, on
  23. ^ "Evolution of the Arab Flag, by Dr. Mahdi Abdul Hadi-Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs". Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  24. ^ "Evolution of the Arab Flag, by Dr. Mahdi Abdul Hadi". Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  25. ^ "Evolution of the Arab Flag, by Dr. Mahdi Abdul Hadi". Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  26. ^ "Evolution of the Arab Flag, by Dr. Mahdi Abdul Hadi". Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  27. ^ Mahdi Abdul-Hadi, Al-Khawarij,

External links[edit]