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Near East

Geographical term that roughly encompasses West Asia / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The Near East[lower-alpha 1] is a transcontinental region around the East Mediterranean encompassing West Asia, The Balkans and North Africa, including the historical Fertile Crescent, the Levant, Anatolia, East Thrace and Egypt. The term was originally applied to the Ottoman Empire, but today has varying definitions within different academic circles.

Topographic map of parts of the Near East

According to National Geographic, the terms Near East and Middle East denote the same territories and are "generally accepted as comprising the countries of the Arabian Peninsula, Cyprus, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestinian territories, Syria, and Turkey".[1] In 1997, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations defined the region similarly, but also included Afghanistan.[2] The region (with the exception of Egypt) is "now commonly referred to as West Asia."[3]