Did You Know – the Urdu lafz for the four geographical directions are:
North – Shamal
South – Janoob
East – Mashriq
West – Maghreb
Here is some trivia about the origins of these words –
Shamal (North) is an Arabic word, meaning North, which is also a male name in Afghanistan. In Afghanistan shamal means both ‘wind’ and ‘North.’A shamal [شمال, north] is a northwesterly wind blowing over Iraq and the Persian Gulf states (including Saudi Arabia and Kuwait), often strong during the day, but decreasing at night. Mashriq (also spelt as Mashreq, Mashrek) is, generally speaking, the region of Arab countries to the East of Egypt and north of the Arabian Peninsula, i.e., Iraq, Palestine/Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon and Syria. It relates to the east or the sunrise, and essentially means “east” (most literally or poetically, “place of sunrise”). It refers to a large area in the Middle East, bounded between the Mediterranean Sea and Iran. It is therefore the companion term to Maghreb, meaning “West” (a reference to the Arabic-speaking countries in the west of North Africa). Maghreb is an Arabic term literally meaning “place of setting (of the sun)”, and hence “West.” It derives from the root ghuroob, meaning “to set” or “to be hidden” (however, it is not used to refer to the setting of the moon). In Arabic but not in English, Al Maghreb commonly refers to Morocco.