Although Israelis and Palestinians are adamant that they will not negotiate or indeed compromise over the status of Jerusalem, agreements have been made and understandings reached between the two protagonists, as well as between other Arab states. This book sheds light on the political history of Jerusalem in Arab-Israeli relations over the last 25 years. The author adopts a multidisciplinary approach -involving history, political science, geography, city planing, sociology and international relations - in order to integrate the political status of the city on the negotiating table with its complex urban reality, thereby dispelling many of the myths that shape political discourse about the city. Too often, he argues, Jerusalem's complex political geography has been overlooked in the rush to maximise short-term political gains.
The first chapter presents the geographical and urban reality and its historical background: the second describes how Jerusalem was treated during the peace negotiations between Israel and Egypt in 1977-9; the third analyses the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations from the early 1980s to the Declaration of Principles signed by Israel and the PLO in September 1993; the fourth discusses the status of the Arab League and the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, as well as the status of Jordan in the negotiations concerning Jerusalem and the city's Islamic holy sites; the fifth analyses the Palestinians' position regarding Jerusalem and relations between their local representatives and the Palestinian Authority's national institutions; the sixth examines whether the uniqueness of East Jerusalem also finds expression in its politics. To this end, it analyses the political profile of East Jerusalem's inhabitants and of their representatives in the Legislative Council of the Palestinian Authority. The seventh chapter addresses Israeli policy and actions, under the Labour and Likud administrations. The conclusion discusses the permanent status negotiations, including the unofficial underst
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