Opinions on Palestinian territories

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Not to be confused with Palestine (region).
This article is about the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. For other uses, see Palestinian territories (disambiguation).

"Palestinian territories" and "occupied Palestinian territories" (OPT or oPt) are descriptions often used to describe the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip. Israeli governments have maintained that the area involved is within territorial dispute. The extent of the territories, while subject to future negotiations, have frequently been defined by the Green Line. The term "Palestinian Territory, Occupied" had been utilized by the UN and other international organizations between 1998 to 2013 in order to refer to the Palestinian National Authority; it was replaced by the UN in 2013 by the term State of Palestine.

Israel occupied the territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in the Six-Day War of 1967, which had been earlier occupied by Jordan and Egypt respectively, and has maintained control of them since.

In 1980, Israel officially absorbed East Jerusalem and considers the whole of Jerusalem to be its capital. The inclusion, though never formally amounting to legal annexation, was condemned internationally and declared "null and void" by the United Nations Security Council. The Palestinian National Authority, the United Nations, the international legal and humanitarian bodies and the international community regard East Jerusalem as part of the West Bank, and consequently a part of the Palestinian territories. The Palestinian National Authority housed its offices in Orient House and several other buildings as an assertion of its sovereign interests, until Binjamin Netanyahu shut them down. Israeli sovereignty, however, has not been recognized by any country, since the unilateral annexation of territory occupied during war contravenes the Fourth Geneva Convention.

In 1988, with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) intention to declare a Palestinian State, Jordan renounced all territorial claims to the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, approximately 130 UN Member Nations have recognized the State of Palestine, comprising the Palestinian territories. It has not been recognized by Israel and some Western nations, including the United States.

In 1993, following the Oslo Accords, parts of the territories politically came under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian National Authority (Areas A and B). Israel still exercises full military control and, civil control over 61% of the West Bank (Area C). The Oslo Accords established access to the sea for Gaza within 20 nautical miles from the shore. The Berlin Commitment of 2002 reduced this to 12 miles (19 km). In October 2006 Israel imposed a 6-mile limit, and at the conclusion of the Gaza War restricted access to a 3-nautical-mile limit, beyond which a no-go zone exists. As a result, over 3,000 fishermen are denied access to 85% of the maritime areas agreed to in 1995. The majority of the Dead Sea area is off-limits to Palestinian use, and Palestinians are denied access to its coast line.

Israel disengaged from the Gaza strip in 2005. However, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip are still considered to be occupied by Israel according to the international community. The Hamas takeover of Gaza in 2007 divided the Palestinian territories politically, with Abbas’s Fatah left largely ruling the West Bank and recognized internationally as the official Palestinian Authority (see: Fatah-Hamas conflict). In 2014, there was an agreement between the two political groups to hold elections and form a compromise unity government. The 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict intervened, however the unity government survived.



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Thanks to this graph, we can see the interest Palestinian territories has and the evolution of its popularity.

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