What is the capital of Israel?
The question of the capital of Israel is very controversial. Officially, Jerusalem has been considered the capital of the Israeli state since its creation in 1948. However, the United Nations still considers Jerusalem an occupied territory and has not recognized the annexation of East Jerusalem by Israel in 1967. This complex situation is the result of the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Palestinians also claim East Jerusalem as the capital of their future independent state. The international community has never recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and generally maintains its embassies in Tel Aviv.
The current Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, is a Zionist nationalist leader who has recently been accused by some of pushing his country’s territorial claims more aggressively. His policy of colonizing the occupied Palestinian territories, particularly in the West Bank and east of Jerusalem, has sparked protests in the Arab world and among Arab communities in Israel.
The Palestinians, led by Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, have sought international recognition of their independent state, including at the United Nations. However, the international community remains divided on the issue. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has seen many periods of violence, including the intifada of the 1980s and the second intifada of the 2000s. The Israeli army, known by the acronym tsahal, is often accused of violating the rights of Palestinians and imposing difficult living conditions on them.
Beyond the issue of the capital, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is marked by issues of sovereignty, settlement, Palestinian rights and national security for Israel. Attempts to revive the peace process have been made under various US administrations, but without much success.
The historical context of Palestine also makes the issue of the capital more complex. The region was under Ottoman rule for several centuries before being colonized by the British, who proclaimed a Jewish national home in Palestine in 1917. This decision was strongly opposed by Arab Palestinians and contributed to the 1948 Nakba, which resulted in the flight and exile of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians. The Jewish community in Israel is divided between right-wing nationalists who advocate a more aggressive approach to the Palestinians and those who want a negotiated, peaceful solution to the conflict. The issue of Israel’s capital is thus strongly linked to the broader issues of the Palestinian question and the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In conclusion, the issue of Israel’s capital is complex and highly controversial because of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the political and historical issues it raises. Although Jerusalem is considered the official capital of Israel, many countries and international organizations have not recognized this decision and have maintained their embassies in Tel Aviv. The search for a peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains a major challenge for the international community.