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Administrative divisions of the Oslo Accords

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The Oslo Accords created three temporary distinct administrative divisions in the West Bank/Judea and Samaria and Gaza Strip until a final status accord would be established. The areas are not contiguous within each other but rather distributed depending on the different population areas as well as Israeli military requirements.

  • Area 'A' - full control of the Palestinian Authority. This area includes all Palestinian cities and surrounding areas with no Israeli civilian presence. Some Israel Defense Forces installations were redeployed out of these locations prior to the implementation of the accords. This constitutes 2.7% of the land area. [1]
  • Area 'B' - Palestinian civil control and Israeli security control. Includes areas of many Palestinian towns and villages and areas with no Israeli presence. These areas constitute 25.1% of the land area.[1]
  • Area 'C' - full Israeli control, except over Palestinian civilians. These areas include the Israeli settlements (cities, towns, and villages), land in the vicinity of these localities, most roadways that connected the settlements (and which Israelis are now restricted to) as well as strategic areas described as "security zones". These areas constitute 72.2% of the land area.[1]

Religious Sites

The Palestinian side (later to become the Palestinian National Authority) agreed to ensure free access to a specific list of Jewish religious sites located in Areas 'A' and 'B' as specified in the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip,[2] but due to the uncertain security situation, the Israel Defense Forces limits visits by Jews to rare occasions.

In Area 'C', Palestinians were given the right to visit al-Maghtas on the Jordan River.


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