GENERAL /

Date Established: November 15, 1988 (Declaration of Independence but ongoing sovereignty dispute with Israel)

US Aid: Obligated: $
Spent: $

GOVERNMENT /

Chief of State: President Mahmoud Abbas

Head of Government: Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh

Government Type: Presidential Republic

Capital: Ramallah, (Jerusalem, proclaimed)

Legislature: National Council

Judiciary: Mixed legal system with Islamic law, French law, and common law

Ambassador to US: The US does not recognize the State of Palestine and therefore has no diplomatic nor consular exchanges with it

US Ambassador: The US does not recognize the State of Palestine and therefore has no diplomatic nor consular exchanges with it

PEOPLE & SOCIETY /

Population: 5.1 million

Language: Arabic (official), Hebrew, English

Ethnicity: Palestinian Arabs, Jews, Arameans, other

Religion: Muslims (predominantly Sunni) (80-85%), Jewish (12-14%), Christian (mainly Greek Orthodox) (1-2.5%), other (< 1%)

Christian Communities: Greek (Antiochian) Orthodox, Greek (Melkite) Catholic, Armenian Apostolic, Armenian Catholic, Coptic Orthodox, Syriac Orthodox, Syriac Catholic, Syriac Maronite, Chaldean Catholic, Roman Catholic, Protestant

Palestinian territories

Palestinian territories

BACKGROUND

The Palestinian Territories, according to the United Nations, are 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 Bank, it 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

  • Foreign Minister says critical situation in Palestinian Territories reflects serious shortcomings of the international system: The Palestinian FM stated on October 9th that the critical situation in the Palestinian Territories is due to the lack of action on the part of the international community. He stated that the international community has watched and allowed Israel to continue its illegal practices without consequences and accountability. He called on the countries of the Non-Aligned Movement to support the Palestinian cause. - WAFA

  • Chief Palestinian negotiator Erekat faces difficult COVID-19 symptoms: Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said that he was suffering difficult symptoms after contracting the coronavirus, but that things were under control. He stated that he was in isolation and receiving medical treatment at home one day after he tested positive. Erekat is secretary general of the PLO. - Yahoo!

Palestinian territories

Palestinian territories

GENERAL /

Date Established: November 15, 1988 (Declaration of Independence but ongoing sovereignty dispute with Israel)

US Aid: Obligated: $
Spent: $

GOVERNMENT /

Chief of State: President Mahmoud Abbas

Head of Government: Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh

Government Type: Presidential Republic

Capital: Ramallah, (Jerusalem, proclaimed)

Legislature: National Council

Judiciary: Mixed legal system with Islamic law, French law, and common law

Ambassador to US: The US does not recognize the State of Palestine and therefore has no diplomatic nor consular exchanges with it

US Ambassador: The US does not recognize the State of Palestine and therefore has no diplomatic nor consular exchanges with it

PEOPLE & SOCIETY /

Population: 5.1 million

Language: Arabic (official), Hebrew, English

Ethnicity: Palestinian Arabs, Jews, Arameans, other

Religion: Muslims (predominantly Sunni) (80-85%), Jewish (12-14%), Christian (mainly Greek Orthodox) (1-2.5%), other (< 1%)

Christian Communities: Greek (Antiochian) Orthodox, Greek (Melkite) Catholic, Armenian Apostolic, Armenian Catholic, Coptic Orthodox, Syriac Orthodox, Syriac Catholic, Syriac Maronite, Chaldean Catholic, Roman Catholic, Protestant

BACKGROUND

The Palestinian Territories, according to the United Nations, are 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 Bank, it 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

    • Israeli warplane, artillery attack sites in the besieged Gaza Strip, causing damage but no casualties: Israeli warplane and artillery bombed a couple of sites in the south of the besieged Gaza Strip causing damage but no human  - WAFA

    • Israel warplanes, artillery strike Gaza, cause damage but no injuries: Israeli warplanes and artillery struck two sites to the east of Rafah, south of the besieged Gaza Strip. - WAFA

    • President Abbas says to the British Foreign Secretarythat peace will not be achieved by bypassing the Palestinians: President Mahmoud Abbas told visiting British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab that peace will not be achieved in the region by bypassing the Palestinians or through normalization of relations with Arab countries. - WAFA

    • Jerusalem Mufti resigns from UAE peace forum over normalization statement: The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Muhammad Hussein, resigned from a UAE forum over the forum’s statement endorsing normalization with Israel. - WAFA

    • ICRC: Gazans face ‘double crisis’, need international support: Gazans are facing a critical “double crisis” as they struggle to cope with an acute electricity shortage. Additionally, COVID-19 has escaped containment and begun infecting the vulnerable population of the Strip, said the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). - WAFA

  • President Abbas says Palestinian community in UAE will be a constructive element, and not part of a passing crisis: A spokesman for the Palestinian Presidency said that President Mahmoud Abbas highly appreciates the positive role played by the Palestinian community in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and its contributions over the past decades in strengthening the brotherly relations between the Palestinian and Emirati peoples. - WAFA

  • Heads of churches in Bethlehem warn of attempts to harm Christian-Muslim coexistence: In a press statement, heads of Bethlehem churches commended President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian leadership for their effective role in support of the Palestinian people in general and Palestinian Christians in particular, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. They stressed that Palestinian Christians and Muslims are united in their national struggle for independence at the time when “foreign or domestic agendas are pursued to create strife and undermine Christian-Muslim coexistence” in Palestine. - WAFA

  • Office of presidency condemns burning national symbols of UAE: Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said that President Mahmoud Abbas will not accept insulting the national symbols of any of the Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates. - WAFA

  • Shtayyeh says any retreat from the Arab Peace Initiative is a weakening of Arab-Palestinian position: Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh affirmed today that the Arab Peace Initiative is the reference set by Arabs to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict, stressing that any retreat from this initiative is a weakening of the Arab-Palestinian position. - WAFA