Both Security and Justice

for Palestinians as well as Israelis

West Bank and the Palestinian Territories [Wikipedia URL]

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The West Bank (Arabic: الضفة الغربيةaḍ-Ḍaffah l-Ġarbiyyah, Hebrew: הגדה המערבית‎, HaGadah HaMa'aravit or Hebrew: יהודה והשומרוןYehuda ve-HaŠomron[1][2]) of the Jordan River is the landlocked[3] geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. The West Bank also contains a significant coastline along the western bank of the Dead Sea. Since 1967, most of the West Bank has been under Israeli military occupation and is referred to as Judea and Samaria Area by Israel. A smaller part of the West Bank is administered by the Israeli civilian authorities as part of Jerusalem District.


For 400 years immediately prior to the First World War, the area now known as the West Bank was under Ottoman rule as part of the province of Syria. At the 1920 San Remo conference, the victorious Allied powers (UK, US, etc.) allocated the area to the British Mandate of Palestine. Following World War II, United Nations passed the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181 (II) Future Government of Palestine which aimed to establish a two-state solution within Palestine. The Resolution designated the territory described as "Samaria and Judea" (now known as the "West Bank") as part of the proposed Arab state, but following the 1948 Arab-Israeli War this area was captured by Trans-Jordan (renamed Jordan in 1949). The name "West Bank" was proposed by the Jordanian authorities to describe the area west of Jordan River. The 1949 Armistice Agreements defined its interim boundary. From 1948 until 1967, the area was under Jordanian rule, and Jordan did not officially relinquish its claim to the area until 1988, ceding its territorial claims to the PLO and eventually stripping West Bank Palestinians of Jordanian citizenship.[4][5] Jordan's claim was never formally recognized by the international community, with the exception of the United Kingdom.[6][7] The West Bank was occupied by Israel during the Six-Day War in June, 1967. With the exception of East Jerusalem and the former Israeli-Jordanian no man's land, the West Bank was not annexed by Israel but remained under Israeli military control. Most of the residents are Arabs, although a large number of Israeli settlements have been built in the region since 1967. Close to 500,000 Israelis live in the West Bank settlements, annexed East Jerusalem and the former Israeli-Jordanian no man's land areas.[8]


The West Bank has a land area of 5,640 km2 (including East Jerusalem),[9] and 220 km2 water (the northwest quarter of the Dead Sea). Its population is 1,714,845 (June 2010)[10] according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS). As of December 2010, 327,750 Israelis live in the 121 officially-recognised settlements in the West Bank, 192,000 Israelis live in settlements in East Jerusalem and over 20,000 live in settlements in the Golan Heights [11][12]


Wikipedia URL