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Borders / Palestinian Perspective

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Potential Palestinian territory

Many Palestinians see the entirety of the land between the Jordan River and Mediterranean Sea as their historic homeland, and believe they are entitled to 100 percent of it.

But over time, Palestinians have seen their portion of the land recede — from 100 percent to 75 percent in 1937 (Peel Commission), to 44 percent in 1947 (United Nations Partition Plan), and finally to 22 percent in 1949 (Arab-Israeli War).

The 1949 armistice lines served as Israel’s effective borders until 1967 — which is why they are known as the 1967 lines or Green Line. From 1949 - 1967, Jordan controlled the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Egypt controlled the Gaza Strip, but Israel gained control of those areas in the 1967 war. Palestinians and much of the international community consider these areas to be under Israeli military occupation. In 1988, the Palestine Liberation Organization began to shift from its demand for 100 percent of the land to a state based on the 1967 lines — 22 percent. Palestinians view this as their ‘historic compromise.’ Today, Palestinians see their 22 percent shrinking, as Israeli settlements expand across the West Bank.

Boiling down the Palestinian position: A Palestinian state MUST comprise the equivalent of 100 percent of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem — 100 percent of their 22 percent.

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