Arab–Israeli and Israeli-Palestinian conflict

6 January 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Editorial, General, Union for the Mediterranean

© Oncenawhile

© Oncenawhile

(Latest update: 20 September 2019) The Arab–Israeli conflict is the political tension, military conflicts and disputes between a number of Arab countries and Israel. The roots (European colonial period, Ottoman Empire, widespread Antisemitism in Europe, Jews in the Russian Empire, Baron Edmond James de Rothschild (Jewish land purchase in Palestine), Theodor Herzl, Jewish National Fund, timeline of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, World War I, Sykes–Picot Agreement (San Remo conference, Mandate for Palestine, UN Charter, Chapter XII – International Trusteeship System, Article 80 (commonly known as the “Palestine Article” used by both conflict parties, Israel and Palestine, to create the wildest interpretations, speculations and conspiracy theories to assert the respective alleged right to the total land area), McMahon–Hussein Correspondence), Balfour Declaration, World War II, The Holocaust (International Holocaust Remembrance Day), Évian Conference, Mandatory Palestine, Forced displacement, and United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine) of the modern Arab–Israeli conflict (or the history of collective failure) are bound in the rise of Zionism and Arab nationalism towards the end of the 19th century. Territory regarded by the Jewish people as their historical homeland is also regarded by the Pan-Arab movement as historically and currently belonging to the Palestinians, and in the Pan-Islamic context, as Muslim lands. The sectarian conflict between Palestinian Jews and Arabs emerged in the early 20th century, peaking into a full-scale civil war in 1947 and transforming into the First Arab–Israeli War in May 1948 following the Israeli Declaration of Independence (Nakba). Large-scale hostilities mostly ended with the cease-fire agreements after the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Ramadan War, or October War. Peace agreements were signed between Israel and Egypt in 1979, resulting in Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula and abolishment of the military governance system in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, in favor of Israeli Civil Administration and consequent unilateral, internationally not recognized, annexation of the Syrian Golan Heights and East Jerusalem. Even when the text is about 97 pages long, it is just a summary. The multitude of links point out that there is a lot more to learn in detail. At first, it is a timeline of the major developments in the region and it leads to today’s challenges. The starting point is the view of the international community, especially the European Union and North America, on the conflict, enriched with excursions into the ideas, convictions, believes, and thoughts of the direct and indirect involved parties to the conflict.   read more…

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Theme Week East Jerusalem – The Al-Aqsa Mosque on Temple Mount

6 January 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean

Al-Aqsa Mosque © Andrew Shiva

Al-Aqsa Mosque © Andrew Shiva

Al-Aqsa Mosque (“the Farthest Mosque”) is the third holiest site in Islam and is located in East Jerusalem. The site on which the silver domed mosque sits, along with the Dome of the Rock, is referred to as al-Haram ash-Sharif (“the Noble Sanctuary”), or the Temple Mount. Muslims believe that Muhammad was transported from the Sacred Mosque in Mecca to al-Aqsa during the Night Journey. Islamic tradition holds that Muhammad led prayers towards this site until the seventeenth month after the emigration, when God directed him to turn towards the Kaaba.   read more…

Theme Week East Jerusalem – The Dome of the Rock/Qubbat As-Sakhrah on Temple Mount

18 November 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean

© Starbuck121/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Starbuck121/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Dome of the Rock is a shrine located on the Temple Mount/Haram Al-Sharif in East Jerusalem. It was initially completed in 691 CE at the order of Umayyad Caliph Abd al-Malik during the Second Fitna. The Dome of the Rock is now one of the oldest works of Islamic architecture. It has been called “Jerusalem’s most recognizable landmark”. Its architecture and mosaics were patterned after nearby Byzantine churches and palaces. The octagonal plan of the structure may also have been influenced by the Byzantine Chapel of St Mary built between 451 and 458 on the road between Jerusalem and Bethlehem.   read more…

Theme Week Jerusalem, Al-Quds and The Holy, many names for one of the oldest cities in the world

19 October 2013 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Theme Weeks, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean

The Western Wall, the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa mosque © Sheepdog85/cc-by-sa-3.0-de

The Western Wall, the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa mosque © Sheepdog85/cc-by-sa-3.0-de

Jerusalem/al-Quds, located on a plateau in the Judean Mountains between the Mediterranean and the Dead Sea, is one of the oldest cities in the world. It is considered holy to the three major Abrahamic religions — Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Israelis (Jerusalem Law) and Palestinians both claim Jerusalem as their capital, as Israel maintains its primary governmental institutions there and the State of Palestine ultimately foresees it as its seat of power; however, neither claim is recognized internationally (United Nations Security Council Resolution 478, International positions on Jerusalem and United States recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel). De jure, Tel Aviv (were all foreign embassies are located at) remain to be Israel’s capital, even though it is de facto West Jerusalem. The city has 800,000 inhabitants. During its long history, Jerusalem has been destroyed twice, besieged 23 times, attacked 52 times, and captured and recaptured 44 times. The oldest part of the city was settled in the 4th millennium BCE. In 1538, walls were built around Jerusalem under Suleiman the Magnificent. Today, those walls define the Old City, which has been traditionally divided into four quarters—known since the early 19th century as the Armenian, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim Quarters. The Old City became a World Heritage site in 1981, and is on the List of World Heritage in Danger. What is particularly striking about the decades-long “capital dispute” is that Jerusalem before 1920 was a lot, but above all a small settlement without a capital function. In this respect, there can be no “justified claim” be given on the city. It was not until the British Mandate of Palestine that the mandate headquarters was moved to Jerusalem, so that Jerusalem became the capital of British Palestine. Scientifically proven is that the city has been one of several spiritual centers for several thousand years. However, at the beginning there was neither Christianity, Judaism nor Islam.   read more…

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