The Asian continent is the largest continent on Earth, with an area of 44.5 million square kilometers. Its limits are: to the southwest, the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, which separate it from Africa; to the west, the Ural Mountains, which represent the divider between Europe and Asia in the whole of Eurasia; further west, the Caucasus Mountains and the Caspian and Black Seas, which also represent the limit in relation to Europe; it is bathed in the east by the Pacific Ocean (subdivided into the South China Sea, the East China Sea, the Yellow Sea, the Sea of Japan, the Sea of Okhotsk and the Bering Sea); to the south it is bathed by the Indian Ocean (subdivided into Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea and Gulf of Bengal); and to the north it is bathed by the Arctic Ocean.
The Middle East region represents an area of more than 5 million square kilometers, which extends west-east between the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf, with a predominance of population of Arab origin and dry climates. Regarding Africa, the Sinai Peninsula is almost integrating the Middle East with the African continent. The construction of the Suez Canal in the 19th century created a small separation of just over 50 meters at the narrowest points. In relation to Europe, the Anatolian Peninsula, where Turkey is located, determines the boundaries between these two continents. The separation is made by the Bosphorus and Dardanelles. The Bosphorus Strait, which is between 550 and 3,000 meters wide, is the result of a long tectonic fault. Located a little further in the western portion of Turkish territory,
There is an ease of circulation in the Middle East due to the presence of gulfs and straits. The Strait of Gibraltar controls the sea route that connects the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. The passage between the Mediterranean and the Black Sea is more restricted, being possible only through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits in Turkey. Other important routes are the Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea; Bab el Mandeb, a strait that separates the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean; and the Strait of Hormuz, which connects the Persian Gulf to the Indian Ocean, essential for oil tankers.
Most countries in the Middle East are part of the Arabian Tectonic Plate. There is strong instability in several locations, such as Iran and especially in Turkey, with the occurrence of strong earthquakes. This phenomenon results from the contacts between the Arabian, African, Eurasian, Indian plates and the Anatolian and Hellenic microplates. The predominant relief is plateau, with emphasis on the Plateau of Anatolia, in Turkey, and the Plateau of Iran. There are few plains, with emphasis on the Mesopotamian Plain, located between Iran and Iraq. Mountain ranges exist in almost the entire region, with some peaks over 5,000 meters. Modern folds have as main examples the Zagros Mountain Range, which occupies the eastern part of Iraq and mainly Iran, and the Hindu Kush Mountain Range, between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Desert and semi-arid climates are the most common in the region. These climatic types result from the middle latitudes that form zones of high atmospheric pressure, dispersing the humid air masses. Mountain ranges also have an influence on climatic aspects. On the one hand, they produce a mild climate by accumulating orographic rainfall in areas of medium and even higher altitudes. On the other hand, they favor the presence of dry areas, forming barriers to the entry of rain into the interior of the continent. Evidently, in the higher places the cold mountain climate occurs. Throughout the region’s history, territorial disputes have had a wide connection with the limits of access to drinking water and agricultural soils, and even today there is a geopolitical connotation for the places where the springs are located,
In desert areas, rainfall is low, averaging four centimeters per year. Along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, as well as in the vicinity of the Black and Caspian Seas, the water serves to decrease the extreme temperatures of the desert, resulting in a more moderate climate. In areas best served by rain and rivers (such as the Tigris and Euphrates basins, areas bathed by the Jordan River and along the Mediterranean coast), agriculture is more practiced. In Turkey, the Mediterranean climate favors more rain during the winter months.
You can try Abbreviation Finder to get a complete list of initials and acronyms with Middle East.
If you consider pursing a law degree and decide to study in Middle East, then you’ve come to the right place. Here, we provide rankings for all law schools in Middle East based on alumni reviews, graduate employment rate, faculty and student ratio, admissions acceptance rates, etc. In addition to the Middle East rankings, you can also see where each school is ranked world wide.
Among 21 top ranked law schools, 6 are found in Jordan, 4 in Lebanon and Israel respectively. The remaining 7 are from Bahrain, Iran, Yemen, Kuwait, and Syria. For detailed rankings of all law schools in Middle East, please see the following table.
|University of Bahrain – School of Law||Manama||Bahrain|
|University of Teheran – Faculty of Law||Tehran||Iran|
|Islamic Azad University||Tehran||Iran|
|Bar Ilan University – Faculty of Law||Ramat-Gan||Israel|
|Tel Aviv University Law Faculty||Tel Aviv||Israel|
|Hebrew University of Jerusalem – Faculty of Law||Jerusalem||Israel|
|University of Haifa Faculty of Law||Haifa||Israel|
|Mu’tah University – Faculty of Law||Mu’tah||Jordan|
|Yarmouk University – Faculty of Law||Irbid||Jordan|
|University of Jordan – Faculty of Law||Amman||Jordan|
|Applied Science University – Faculty of Law||Amman||Jordan|
|Al-Isra University – Faculty of Law||Amman||Jordan|
|Al-Ahliyya Amman University – Faculty of Law||Amman||Jordan|
|Kuwait University – College of Law||Khaldiya||Kuwait|
|La Sagesse University – Faculty of Law||Furn El Chebak||Lebanon|
|Université Saint-Joseph – Faculté de Droit et des Sciences Politiques||Beirut||Lebanon|
|Université Libanaise – Faculté de Droit et des Sciences Politiques et Administratives||Beirut||Lebanon|
|Beirut Arab University – Faculty of Law||Beirut||Lebanon|
|Damascus University – Faculty of Law||Damascus||Syria|
|University of Aden||Aden||Yemen|
Unfortunately, there are no top ranked law universities from other 8 countries in Middle East (Cyprus, Egypt, Iraq, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and United Arab Emirates, as listed by Countryaah.)
Syria’s older history
Syria’s ancient history here includes the country’s history from ancient times until the incorporation into the Ottoman Empire in 1516. Historically, Syria is mostly a geographical term and was not a state formation of its own. In ancient times Syria was subject to a number of rulers, including Persians, Greeks and Romans, before the area was subjugated to the Muslim Arabs of the 600s.
Archaeological and paleontological finds attest to human settlement in Syria and Palestine dating back to the Middle Paleolithic era. From Mesolithic there are traces, among other things, of the Native American culture (around 10,000 BCE), which spread along the coast of the Levant, and is especially known for growing and utilizing grain, but where hunting and fishing were also conducted. From this there are also early traces of cultivation of grain. The extraction of minerals is known from the middle of the 4th millennium BCE. Then came the first cities. The earliest signs of written notes, as a precursor to written language, originate in the Middle East; areas that can be linked to Syrian prehistoric times, around 8000 BCE.
Subject to various civilizations
Syria was in the last three millennium before our time counted for several waves of Semitic immigration to the area; of Canaanites and Phoenicians, Hebrews and Arabs, as well as nomadic peoples. The Ebla civilization, documented through excavations south of Aleppo, was a Semitic kingdom that extended from the Red Sea to Anatolia, and from the Mediterranean east to Iraq, from around 3000 BCE. The spread of Ebla was based on trade, and Syria has long been an intermediary in the trade between Egypt and Asia Minor.and Mesopotamia, later in the caravan trade with the East. Several great kingdoms, including Mesopotamia, sometimes included Syria, including the Akkadian Empire and the Guti and Ur dynasties. These took control of the area after Ebla was destroyed.
With a new wave of Semitic immigration, a number of Amorite minor states were founded within the borders of present-day Syria between 2000 and 1800 BCE. With the exodus from Syria, Hyksos conquered power in northern Egypt in 1674 BCE. In the 17th and 16th centuries BCE. Syria became part of the Mitanni kingdom, around 1550 Syria came under Egypt, which in the 1300s lost the country to the Hittites. Later, a new immigration came from the east, by an Indo-European group known as the Neo-Hittites and who founded several small empires.
In the 11th century, Syria belonged to a period of the Assyrian empire – and battles with Aramaic small states in northern Syria, before the Arameans founded a kingdom in Damascus in the 11th century BCE. – at the same time that the Israelites established a kingdom around Jerusalem. The Assyrian empire expanded, especially towards the Mediterranean in the west, before the country was conquered in turn by the Medes, Babylonians, Persians and Greeks. The Persian conquest happened in the 5th century BCE, and Palestine and Cyprus were then placed under Syria.
Antiquity: Greek and Roman rule
Alexander the Great invaded Asia Minor in 334 BCE. and defeated the Persians at Issus in 333, to occupy Syria in 322. The capital of his new kingdom was added to Antioch, which belongs to historic Syria; now located in Turkey. After Alexander’s death, Syria was divided after a battle between the Selevkids (north) and the Ptolemies (south), and after 301 became part of the Selevkids (later also called the Syrian) kingdom. Several new cities were founded; republics replaced kingdoms, including Tyr and Byblos. Greek cultural and political influence spread, among other things through increased urbanization, with strong cities. But under self-rule, with internal strife, Syria disintegrated, and the southern part was divided into three tribal dynasties, between the Itureans, the Jews and the Neighbors. Syria was then conquered by Tigranes II of Armenia (83 BCE) until he was defeated by the Romans.
Then, from 64/63 BCE, Syria became a Roman province – and reorganized. Conquered in 64, Antioch became the third largest city in the Roman Empire, after Rome and Alexandria. Several small kingdoms were placed under central administration in Roman Syria. Immigration of nomadic tribes continued under Roman rule, and some small states were formed in the area, including the Palmyrian kingdom, which was destroyed by Emperor Aurelian in 272 AD. During Septimius Severus (193-211), Syria was divided into two; Syria Coele in the north and Syria Phoenice in the south.
Under Byzantine (East Roman) rule, Syria’s borders were strengthened to withstand increasing Persian and Arab pressure. Persians occupied parts of Syria during periods, including Antioch in 540.
Middle Ages: Muslim rule
Muslim Arabs invaded Syria in 633-634 and conquered Damascus in 635. The counter-attack at Yarmuk in 636 was fought back, and by 640 the Arabs had completed their conquest. Syria was divided into four districts; Damascus, Homs, Jordan and Palestine; later Kinnasrin became a fifth. The Byzantine administration was continued, but an Islamic tax system was introduced. Islamization took place while respecting other religions, such as Judaism and Christianity. The Arabs used Syria as a base for attacks against Byzantium, and established a first Muslim naval force in the Mediterranean.
Syria was subjugated to the Muslim Caliphate in the years 661–750, and became the political and cultural seat of the mighty Omayyad dynasty. When its headquarters moved to Baghdad in 750, Syria was in a backbone. As the center of the Omayyad kingdom, Syria was at the height of its reach. Through war with Byzantine, Syrian and Arab forces advanced into Asia Minor, besieged Constantinople, and spread Islam to India in the east and along the coast of North Africa to the west, where large parts of Spain were occupied. During this period, Syria benefited from increased revenues from the trade, made visible in several buildings that still exist, including the Dome of Jerusalem and the Great Mosque of Damascus. With the spread ofIslam also increased the influence of Arab culture. During Abd al-Malik (685-705), Arabic became the official language.
Late in the Umayyad period, central power was weakened, partly as a result of political and religious tensions, and the dynasty was overthrown in 750, when the Abbasid Caliphate (750–1258) took over. Thus, the regional center of power was moved from Syria to Iraq, and Syria was subject to the caliphate in Baghdad. Syria’s political position deteriorated – and even more as the Abbasid Caliphate disintegrated.
In 877, Syria was conquered by Egyptian emir Ahmad ibn-Tulun; from 997, the northern part of the country came under a local Arab dynasty with its seat in Aleppo – and went to war against Byzantium, after which the Greeks in 969 regained control of Antioch. The rest of the country remained under Egyptian rule, and the Fatimids left all of Syria under their caliphate. They were Shias, while Syria was dominated by Sunnis – and a period of great cultural expression.
The Turkish souls conquered Syria in 1075, but the empire disintegrated early, paving the way for European crusaders. They occupied parts of Syria and took control – from 1098 to 1124 – of Antioch and Jerusalem, including the coastal areas of present-day Syria, Lebanon and Israel. The Crusaders divided the area into four states that were subject to the King of the Christian Kingdom of Jerusalem. The crusaders were inferior in number, and were challenged by local Muslim rulers, including the Turkish ruler of Mosul, Zangï, who captured Aleppo in 1128 and captured Edessa in 1144. His son, Nureddin, united Syria and Egypt under Muslim rule in 1154. The sequel, Saladin, ended the Fatimid Caliphate, created a strong state – and defeated the Crusaders at the Battle of Hattin in 1187. As a result of some disintegration following Saladin’s death in 1193, when the kingdom was divided into smaller units, the Crusaders succeeded in restoring control over parts. of the Syrian coastal areas. However, with Akko’s fall for the Egyptian Mamluks in 1291, the crusade period ended.
Saladin’s successors, the Ayyubids, established kingdoms in Aleppo, Baalbek, Damascus, Hama, Homs and Transjordan, and ruled until 1260. This was a period of increased trade in the Mediterranean, and with economic and cultural progress in Syria. With also the Sunni direction within Islam strengthened after a period of Shiite rule.
Several Mongol invasions took place in the 13th century. Aleppo was taken 1260; Damascus 1300. The Mongols were defeated by the Mamluks’ entry into Syria (Palestine) in 1260, and Egypt and Syria were again united into one kingdom, divided into six provinces, of which Damascus was the largest. With the Mamluks, who were Sunnis, religious freedom was limited. From the 1400s, Syria underwent an economic downturn under the Mamluk regime, reinforced by a new Mongol invasion in 1401, when Aleppo and Damascus were invaded, with major devastation as a result.
Parallel to the downturn in Syria, a new empire emerged with its seat in Byzantium: The new Turkish Sultanate, eventually known as the Ottoman Empire, took over the hegemony of the Levant. The battle of Marj Dabik in 1516 was won by the Turkish sultan Selim I, and Syria became subject to the Ottoman Empire, which the following year also conquered Egypt, for the next four hundred years.