Palestinian territories

Palestinian territories

BACKGROUND

The Palestinian Territories, according to the United Nations, is a de jure sovereign state. The territory is divided into two separate locations in the region: the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. For more than 400 years, the Ottoman Empire controlled Palestine until after World War I, which resulted in British control of the land. Significant tension between the indigenous population in Palestine and Jewish immigrants fleeing persecution and genocide led to the UN Partition Plan of 1947, which proposed to divide the land between the two. After Israel declared statehood in 1948, the outcome of war left many Palestinians stateless. The Oslo Accords established Palestinian interim self-government, but the Palestinian people continue to seek full sovereignty today. In the West Bankit is estimated that approximately 1% of the population of approximately 3 million people is Christian and in the Gaza Strip, which has a population of 1.9 million, there are fewer than 1,000 Christians left. 

LATEST NEWS

  • Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh gave orders to his cabinet members to immediately start work on implementing the decision of the Palestinian leadership regarding ending all agreements and understandings with Israel. Shtayyeh’s remarks came during a Palestinian cabinet emergency meeting held in Ramallah to discuss the implementation of the decision announced on Tuesday by President Mahmoud Abbas concerning the relationship with Israel and the United States. -Wafa News
  • The Church of the Holy Sepulcher is said to be reopened, according to a statement by the three Christian communities in Jerusalem. The reopening will adhere to strict restrictions due to the coronavirus, and at the beginning there will be up to 50 persons at the time and the minimal distance between the visitor s has to be two meters. -Wafa News 
  • The Palestinian Territories refused to take any medical aid sent from the UAE. The Palestinian government source explained that they didn’t want to become a “tool of normalization” between Israel and UAE since they did not have diplomatic relations and the flight from Abu Dhabi landed in Tel Aviv. - Times of Israel 
  • Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh called today upon the European Union to break the fait accompli which Israel has been trying to impose, by recognizing the State of Palestine as an independent country and pressuring Israel not to go ahead with its West Bank annexation plan. -Wafa News

archive

  • During the upcoming Ramadan, Al-Aqsa Mosque will stay closed. The Jerusalem Islamic Waqf Council has said in its statement that daily prayers will still be performed in the mosque, but by Waqf employees and guards. The mosques in the West Bank will also remain closed due to the pandemic, according to Mahmoud al-Habash, the Chief Religious Justice of Palestine. - Wafa News 
  • On the Saturday before Easter each year, thousands of pilgrims travel to the Jerusalem Holy Sepulcher to witness the Holy Fire miracle. But due to the canceling of the Holy Week services around the world, the Orthodox Christians may feel affected the most. This year, the fire from the tomb in the Holy Sepulcher, which normally would be shred candle-to-candle, will be transported in special containers. First to Greece, and then to Serbia, Russia and other states that has Orthodox Christians. - Christianity Today 
  • The head of the Palestinian Prisoners Society Qadoura Fares, has stated that there is hope for a prisoner exchange agreement with Israel soon. This would result in the release of sick and female prisoners. PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi wants the international community to put pressure on Israel to release all Palestinian prisoners, taking the pandemic virus into consideration. - Jerusalem Post 
  • In an Amicus Curiae on the situation of the State of Palestine submitted on 16 March to the International Criminal Court (ICC)Richard Falk, former UN Special Rapporteur for the Palestinian Territories, said that the occupied Palestinian territory constitutes legitimate territory of the State of Palestine and that even though the Court has no authority to make a ruling on the statehood of Palestine, the State has competence to provide the ICC jurisdiction, as a recognized non-Member State by the UN General Assembly. -WAFA
  • On March 26, the village of Biddo, northwest of Jerusalem confirmed 13 new cases of COVID-19. Of the 86, 9 are in the Gaza Strip. -WAFA
  • Palestinian prisoners, feeling imminent threat and danger to their lives in Israeli jails sent a humanitarian appeal to the world to save them before the COVID-19 pandemic kills them (Foreign Ministry demands immediate release of the Palestinian prisoners in Israel). -WAFA