1967 – 50 Years On

The Status of the West Bank under International Law (BBLBIA Research Paper)

Report by Jeremy Havardi

Executive Summary: 2017 marks the 50 th anniversary of the Six Day War when Israeli forces took control of Sinai, Gaza, The West Bank and The Golan Heights in 6 days. For many today, the West Bank is seen as being occupied by Israeli forces in defiance of international law. Israel is depicted as a colonialist power that seized the territory illegally and which continues to hold it to the detriment of regional peace and stability. Israel control of this territory is held up as the prime barrier to peace. In fact, Israel took control of this territory in a legitimate act of self defence and continues to hold it lawfully until a peace agreement changes its status. Israel is not required to return the territory unilaterally, nor to return it in its entirety. Moreover, handing this territory back to Palestinian control would not be a guarantee of peace as recent events have shown.

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