It is one of three continental plates (the African, Arabian, and Indian Plates) that have been moving northward in recent geological history and colliding with the Eurasian Plate. This is resulting in a mingling of plate pieces and mountain ranges extending in the west from the Pyrenees, crossing Southern Europe to Iran, forming the Alborz and Zagros Mountains, to the Himalayas and ranges of southeast Asia.
|Approximate area||5,000,000 km2|
|Features||Arabian Peninsula, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean|
|1Relative to the African Plate|
The Arabian Plate is the most common designation of the region, although it is also sometimes referred to as the Arab Plate.
The Arabian Plate was part of the African plate during much of the Phanerozoic Eon (Paleozoic–Cenozoic), until the Oligocene Epoch of the Cenozoic Era. Red Sea rifting began in the Eocene, but the separation of Africa and Arabia occurred approximately in the Oligocene, and since then the Arabian Plate has been slowly moving toward the Eurasian Plate. The opening of the Red Sea rift led to extensive volcanic activity. There are large volcanic fields called the Older Harrats, such as Harrat Khaybar and Harrat Rahat, cover large parts of the western Arabian Plate. Some activity still continues especially around Medina, and there are regular eruptions within the Red Sea.
The collision between the Arabian Plate and Eurasia is pushing up the Zagros Mountains of Iran. Because the Arabian Plate and Eurasian Plate collide, many cities are in danger such as those in southeastern Turkey (which is on the Arabian Plate). These dangers include earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes.
Countries within the plate include parts of the Levant (Iraq, eastern Lebanon, Syria, parts of Israel and Jordan(including the disputed territories), the entire Arabian Peninsula (Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Yemen), and Djibouti on the Horn of Africa. Regions include parts of the Southern Denkalya Subregion, the Southeastern Anatolia Region, Awdal and the Khuzestan Province.