Jerusalem: Some Legal Issues

Rüdiger Wolfrum (Ed.), The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Oxford University Press, 2011)

The Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies - The JIIS Studies Series No. 415

35 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2015

See all articles by Ruth Lapidoth

Ruth Lapidoth

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

Although the Jerusalem question is basically a political one, legal aspects are also relevant for several reasons. First, some of the questions are in fact of a legal nature. Second, the parties base their claims on legal arguments. And third, when a compromise is reached, it will be included in a document of a legal nature.

When looking for a solution to the dispute about Jerusalem, one has to take account of various aspects: the symbolic and religious significance of the city, its heterogeneity as well as its geographical location. A compromise has to deal with very difficult matters, e.g. sovereignty (should it be divided? or shared? or suspended? or cooperative? or functional? or belong to God?); borders (should the borders of the city be redrawn? Or should it be enlarged so that it can include both an Israeli and a Palestinian capital?); Holy Places (their definition and their status), municipal structure, planning and conservation, economics, security, possible international involvement, infrastructure (e.g. water, sewage, access roads), settlement of disputes, relations with the adjoining areas (how to preserve the close relationship with the surrounding areas in matters of culture and economics, irrespective of political borders), etc.

Some of these issues are very difficult. But if the parties really want peace, it may be hoped that they may reach a solution to the question of Jerusalem

Keywords: Jerusalem, legal, political, religious, city, sovereignty, God, borders

Suggested Citation

Lapidoth, Ruth, Jerusalem: Some Legal Issues (2011). Rüdiger Wolfrum (Ed.), The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Oxford University Press, 2011); The Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies - The JIIS Studies Series No. 415. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2679232

Ruth Lapidoth (Contact Author)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Faculty of Law ( email )

Mount Scopus
Mount Scopus, IL 91905
Israel

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