10 Facts About Maghreb


The Maghreb includes the disputed territory of Western Sahara and the Spanish cities Ceuta and Melilla.

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Maghreb is usually defined as encompassing much of the northern part of Africa, including a large portion of the Sahara Desert, but excluding Egypt and Sudan, which are considered to be located in the Mashriq — the eastern part of the Arab world.

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The traditional definition of the Maghreb — which restricted its scope to the Atlas Mountains and the coastal plains of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya — was expanded in modern times to include Mauritania and the disputed territory of Western Sahara.

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In May 2015 foreign ministers of the Arab Maghreb Union declared a need for coordinated security policy at the 33rd session of the follow-up committee meeting; this revived hope of some form of cooperation.

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Ibn Khaldun does not accept this definition because, he says, the inhabitants of the Maghreb do not consider Egypt and Barca as forming part of Maghrib.

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The Maghreb region was occasionally briefly unified, as under the Almohad Berber empire, Fatimids and briefly under the Zirids.

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Maghreb is primarily inhabited by peoples of Berber ancestral origin.

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Y-chromosome genetic structure of the Maghreb population seems to be modulated chiefly by geography.

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Original religions of the peoples of the Maghreb seem to have been based in and related to fertility cults of a strong matriarchal pantheon.

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Maghreb is divided into a Mediterranean climate region in the north, and the arid Sahara in the south.

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