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Following World War II, the British withdrew from their mandate of Palestine, and the UN partitioned the area into Arab and Jewish states, an arrangement rejected by the Arabs. Subsequently, the Israelis defeated the Arabs in a series of wars without ending the deep tensions between the two sides. The territories Israel occupied since the 1967 A.D. war are not included in the Israel country profile, unless otherwise noted. On April 25, 1982 A.D., Israel withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 A.D. Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty. Israel and Palestinian officials signed on September 13, 1993 A.D. a Declaration of Principles (also known as the "Oslo Accords") guiding an interim period of Palestinian self-rule. Outstanding territorial and other disputes with Jordan were resolved in the October 26, 1994 A.D. Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace. In addition, on May 25, 2000 A.D., Israel withdrew unilaterally from southern Lebanon, which it had occupied since 1982 A.D.. In keeping with the framework established at the Madrid Conference in October 1991 A.D., bilateral negotiations were conducted between Israel and Palestinian representatives and Syria to achieve a permanent settlement. In April 2003 A.D., US President Bush, working in conjunction with the EU, UN, and Russia - the "Quartet" - took the lead in laying out a roadmap to a final settlement of the conflict by 2005 A.D., based on reciprocal steps by the two parties leading to two states, Israel and a democratic Palestine. However, progress toward a permanent status agreement was undermined by Israeli-Palestinian violence between September 2003 A.D. and February 2005 A.D.. An Israeli-Palestinian agreement reached at Sharm al-Sheikh in February 2005 A.D., along with an internally-brokered Palestinian ceasefire, significantly reduced the violence. In the summer of 2005 A.D., Israel unilaterally disengaged from the Gaza Strip, evacuating settlers and its military. The election of Hamas in January 2006 A.D. to head the Palestinian Legislative Council froze relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Ehud Olmert became prime minister in March 2006 A.D.; following an Israeli military operation in Gaza in June-July 2006 A.D., he shelved plans to unilaterally evacuate from most of the West Bank. The kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers by Lebanese Hizballah led to a 34-day conflict in Lebanon in June-August 2006 A.D..
Hebrew is the official language, and Arabic is a minority language.
---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary
Israel - The name conferred on Jacob after the great prayer-struggle at Peniel (Genesis 32:28), because "as a prince he had power with God and prevailed." (See Jacob.) This is the common name given to Jacob's descendants. The whole people of the twelve tribes are called "Israelites," the "children of Israel" (Joshua 3:17; Joshua 7:25; Judges 8:27; Jeremiah 3:21), and the "house of Israel" (Exodus 16:31; Exodus 40:38). This name Israel is sometimes used emphatically for the true Israel (Psalms 73:1; Isaiah 45:17; Isaiah 49:3; John 1:47; Romans 9:6; Romans 11:26). After the death of Saul the ten tribes arrogated to themselves this name, as if they were the whole nation (2 Samuel 2:9, 2 Samuel 2:10, 2 Samuel 2:17, 2 Samuel 2:28; 2 Samuel 3:10, 2 Samuel 3:17; 2 Samuel 19:40), and the kings of the ten tribes were called "kings of Israel," while the kings of the two tribes were called "kings of Judah." After the Exile the name Israel was assumed as designating the entire nation.
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Media in category "Israel"
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