Given his appearance, Zandar may be a Prince from one of the Seven Deserts mentioned in the Aladdin TV series.
Prince Zandar, being a best friend of James, is near him when he is not near Hildegard. They worked on their dragon costume and castle project together, for instance.
He appears to share James's obsession with cannons and explosions, as the castle they built for their project was basically a huge cannon.
Although that Elephants are traditionally native to Africa, the Indian Subcontinent and South East Asia, He is shown to have a pet elephant, which are not native to the Middle East where Tangu appears to be located