Since 1967, Gaza has been under Israeli military occupation, along with the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Although Israel withdrew its soldiers and some 8,000 settlers from the interior of the tiny, densely populated coastal strip in 2005, Israel continues to control virtually all entry and exit, as well as Gaza's airspace and coastline.
The IMEU offers the following fact sheet on the plight of Palestinian refugees and Syrians living in the Yarmouk refugee camp on the outskirts of Damascus, which has been overrun by fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) over the past week.
In June 2002, under the pretext of security, the Israeli government began unilaterally constructing a wall to separate Palestinians in the occupied West Bank from Israel and occupied East Jerusalem, and from Israeli settlements built inside the West Bank. The IMEU offers the following fact sheet on Israel's West Bank Wall.
Since shortly after it began militarily occupying the Palestinian West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza in the 1967 War, Israel has been colonizing them with Jewish settlers in violation of international law, part of an effort to cement control and prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state. The IMEU offers the following fact sheet on Israel's settlements in occupied Palestinian territories.
The following fact sheet provides a history of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's views on the two-state solution, which has been the foundation of US and international efforts to make peace in the region for decades.
Although Israel is nominally a parliamentary democracy, over the course of the country's nearly 67-year history there has been a period of only about one year (1966-67) that Israel did not rule over large numbers of Palestinians by military decree, granting them no civil or political rights simply because they are not Jewish.
On Wednesday, the Israeli government destroyed the home of a Palestinian man who killed two Israelis in Jerusalem last month, part of a policy of collective punishment. The IMEU offers the following fact sheet on Israel's controversial practice of punitive home demolitions, as well as Israel's use of home demolitions to Judaize occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
Although they often couch their agenda in terms of civil rights and religious freedom, the right-wing Israeli individuals and groups that are pushing for more access and Jewish prayer in the Noble Sanctuary compound want to remove the Muslim holy sites that it currently houses and replace them with a Jewish temple.
In recent weeks, the troubled relationship between the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama and the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has once again been making headlines, following several announcements for new Israeli settlement construction on occupied Palestinian land. For context on these latest developments, the IMEU offers the following fact sheet.