Portal:Palestine

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Introduction

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Palestine (Arabic: فلسطينFilasṭīn), officially the State of Palestine[i] (Arabic: دولة فلسطينDawlat Filasṭīn), is a de jure sovereign state in the Middle East claiming the West Bank (bordering Israel and Jordan) and Gaza Strip (bordering Israel and Egypt) with East Jerusalem as the designated capital, although its administrative center is currently located in Ramallah.[ii] Most of the areas claimed by the State of Palestine have been occupied by Israel since 1967 in the consequence of the Six-Day War. The population is 4,550,368 as of 2014, ranked 123rd in the world.

After World War II, in 1947, the United Nations adopted a Partition Plan for Mandatory Palestine recommending the creation of independent Arab and Jewish states and an internationalized Jerusalem. After the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz Israel, to be known as the State of Israel on 14 May 1948, neighboring Arab armies invaded the former British mandate on the next day and fought the Israeli forces. Later, the All-Palestine Government was established by the Arab League on 22 September 1948 to govern the Egyptian-controlled enclave in Gaza. It was soon recognized by all Arab League members except Transjordan. Though jurisdiction of the Government was declared to cover the whole of the former Mandatory Palestine, its effective jurisdiction was limited to the Gaza Strip. Israel later captured the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria in June 1967 following the Six-Day War. Read more...


  Boundaries of the Roman province Syria Palaestina, where dashed green line shows the boundary between Byzantine Palaestina Prima (later Jund Filastin) and Palaestina Secunda (later Jund al-Urdunn), as well as Palaestina Salutaris (later Jebel et-Tih and the Jifar)

Palestine (Arabic: فلسطينFilasṭīn, Falasṭīn, Filisṭīn; Greek: Παλαιστίνη, Palaistinē; Latin: Palaestina; Hebrew: פלשתינהPalestina) is a geographic region in Western Asia. It is usually considered to include the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, Israel, and in some definitions, some parts of western Jordan. The name was used by ancient Greek writers, and it was later used for the Roman province Syria Palaestina, the Byzantine Palaestina Prima, and the Islamic provincial district of Jund Filastin. The region comprises most of the territory claimed for the biblical regions known as the Land of Israel (Hebrew: ארץ־ישראלEretz-Yisra'el), the Holy Land or Promised Land. Historically, it has been known as the southern portion of wider regional designations such as Canaan, Syria, ash-Sham, and the Levant.

Situated at a strategic location between Egypt, Syria and Arabia, and the birthplace of Judaism and Christianity, the region has a long and tumultuous history as a crossroads for religion, culture, commerce, and politics. The region has been controlled by numerous peoples, including Ancient Egyptians, Canaanites, Israelites and Judeans, Assyrians, Babylonians, Achaemenids, ancient Greeks, the Jewish Hasmonean Kingdom, Romans, Parthians, Sasanians, Byzantines, the Arab Rashidun, Umayyad, Abbasid and Fatimid caliphates, Crusaders, Ayyubids, Mamluks, Mongols, Ottomans, the British, and modern Israelis, Jordanians, Egyptians and Palestinians. Read more...

Selected article

Skyline of Deir al-Balah, 2008

Deir al-Balah or Dayr al-Balah (Arabic: دير البلح‎) is a Palestinian city in the central Gaza Strip and the administrative capital of the Deir al-Balah Governorate. It is located over 14 kilometers (8.7 mi) south of Gaza City. The city had a population of 54,439 in 2007. The city is known for its date palms, after which it is named. Deir al-Balah dates back to the Late Bronze Age when it served as a fortified outpost for the New Kingdom of Egypt. A monastery was built there by the Christian monk Hilarion in the mid-4th-century CE and is currently believed to be the site of a mosque dedicated to Saint George, known locally as al-Khidr. During the Crusader-Ayyubid wars, Deir al-Balah was the site of a strategic coastal fortress known as "Darum" which was continuously contested, dismantled and rebuilt by both sides until its final demolition in 1196; after this the site grew to become a large village on the postal route in the Mamluk era from the 13th to 15th-centuries and served as an episcopal see of the Greek Orthodox Church of Jerusalem in Ottoman times until the late 19th-century. Under Egyptian control Deir al-Balah, whose population tripled through the influx of refugees from the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, was a prosperous agricultural town until its capture by Israel in the Six-Day War. After 27 years of Israeli occupation, Deir al-Balah became the first city to come under Palestinian self-rule in 1994. Since the outbreak of the Second Intifada in 2000, it has witnessed frequent incursions by the Israeli Army with the stated aim of stopping Qassam rocket fire into Israel. Ahmad Kurd, a Hamas member, was elected mayor in late January 2005.

Selected picture

Dome of the Rock
Credit: Yaakov Shoham

The Dome of the Rock is an Islamic shrine and a major landmark located in Jerusalem.

Did you know...

Judean Date Palm

Selected quote

Yasser Arafat
Our basic aim is to liberate the land from the Mediterranean Seas to the Jordan River. We are not concerned with what took place in June 1967 or in eliminating the consequences of the June war. The Palestinian revolution's basic concern is the uprooting of the Zionist entity from our land and liberating it.
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Selected biography

Air Marshall Richard Williams
Sir Richard Williams (1890–1980) is regarded as the "father" of the Royal Australian Air Force. He was the first military pilot trained in Australia, and commanded fighter units in World War I. A proponent of independent air power, Williams played a leading role in the establishment of the RAAF and became its first and longest-serving Chief of the Air Staff (CAS). Born into a working class family, he was an Army Lieutenant when he learned to fly in 1914. As a pilot with the Australian Flying Corps in World War I, Williams commanded No. 1 Squadron and later 40th Wing RAF, earning the Distinguished Service Order. Afterwards he campaigned for an Australian Air Force separate from the Army and Navy, and this came into being on 31 March 1921. The fledgling RAAF faced challenges to its existence for the next decade, and Williams was credited with maintaining its independence. However an adverse report on flying safety saw him dismissed as CAS prior to World War II. Despite promotion to Air Marshal in 1940, he never again commanded the RAAF. After the war he was forcibly retired and took up the position of Director-General of Civil Aviation. He was knighted shortly before his retirement in 1955.

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Topics

Palestine

Demographics: Definitions · State of Palestine · History · Name · People · Diaspora  · Refugee camps · Arab citizens of Israel

Politics: Arab Higher Committee · All-Palestine Gov-t · PLO · PFLP · Depopulated villages

Today: Fatah · Hamas · Islamic Jihad · Political parties in the PNA · PNA · Hamas gov-t · Districts · Governorates · Cities · Arab localities in Israel · PNC · PLC ·

General: Palestinian flag · Law

Palestine: West Bank · Gaza Strip · E. Jerusalem

Religion: Islam · Christianity · Judaism · Dome of the Rock· Al-Aqsa Mosque · Great Mosque of Gaza · Cave of the Patriarchs · Church of the Holy Sepulchre · Basilica of the Annunciation · Church of the Nativity · Joseph's Tomb · Rachel's Tomb · Lot's Tomb · Nabi Samwil

Culture: Art · Costume and embroidery · Cinema · Cuisine · Dance · Handicrafts · Language · Literature · Music

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