Source Documents

Other Resources:

This section presents historical documents, whenever possible in their original, official form, or an independent translation into English.  Please notify us of any broken links or suggestions for additional sources to include.

July 14, 2022: The Jerusalem US-Israel Strategic Partnership Joint Declaration, signed by President of the United States Joe Biden and Prime Minister of Israel Yair Lapid

2017: Hamas Charter (updated)

July 14, 2015: Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) [Iran nuclear agreement]; see also November 24, 2013 Nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers

November 16, 2007: Strategy and Talking Points for Responding to the Precondition of Recognizing Israel as a “Jewish State,” Palestinian Drafting Team/Negotiations Support Unit

September 13, 2007: UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (see especially Articles 2 and 26.1)

July 9, 2004: Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, International Court of Justice

April 2004: Exchange of letters between Prime Minister Sharon and President Bush

September 1995: Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement for the West Bank and Gaza Strip (also known as “Oslo II” or “Taba Agreement”) [background & summary from the Reut Institute]

January 16, 1997: Letter from Secretary of State Warren Christopher to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: “Israel is entitled to secure and defensible borders, which should be directly negotiated and agreed with its neighbors.”

October 26, 1994: Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty

September 1993: Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (“Oslo I,” the main agreement signed between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization)

July 31, 1988: King Hussein’s Address to the Nation [Jordan]: Jordan severs administrative and legal ties with the West Bank.

1988 Hamas Covenant: The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement

April 21, 1978: Letter of the State Department Legal Advisor, Mr. Herbert J. Hansell, Concerning the Legality of Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Territories

Articles 51 and 58 defines the requirements for protection of civilian population.  Article 51 also provides the basis for the discussion of “proportionality.”

June 9, 1974: The PLO’s Phased Plan, Political Programme Adopted at the 12th Session of the Palestinian National Council, Cairo

1973: 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war – Newly declassified material, Israel State Archives, September 2023

December 7, 1970: Treaty of Warsaw between Poland and Federal Republic of Germany concerning the basis of normalisation of mutual relations (recognizes Oder-Neisse line as western border of Poland; text of Willy Brandt televised address in German and in English)

July 1968: Palestinian National Charter (PLO Covenant)

November 22, 1967: UN Security Council Resolution 242

September 11, 1965: Protocol for the Treatment of Palestinians in Arab States (“Casablanca Protocol”), League of Arab States

August 12, 1949: Fourth Geneva Convention regarding the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War [see also this excellent analysis of Article 49 by Elder of Zion]

April 3, 1949: Israel-Jordan Armistice Agreement

March 17, 1949: Problem of Palestine Refugees in Concrete Terms, United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine (UNCCP) Working Paper

December 11, 1948: UN General Assembly Resolution 194 (“Palestine: Progress Report of the United Nations Mediator”)

Article 11 is the basis for the Palestinian claim of the ‘right of return’ for refugees, as well as the right of the Jews expelled from Arab countries to be compensated for their lost and expropriated property.

UN Security Council Resolution 54

UN Security Council Resolution 54

July 15, 1948: United Nations Security Council Resolution 54

“…the Provisional Government of Israel has indicated its acceptance in principle of a prolongation of the truce in Palestine [while] the States members of the Arab League have rejected successive appeals of the United Nations Mediator, and of the Security Council in its resolution 53 (1948) of 7 July 1948, for the prolongation of the truce in Palestine…”

May 16, 1948: Cablegram from the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, informing the UN of the Arab States’ military intervention in Palestine “to restore law and order”

The Arab States recognize that the independence and sovereignty of Palestine which was so far subject to the British Mandate has now, with the termination of the Mandate, become established in fact, and maintain that the lawful inhabitants of Palestine are alone competent and entitled to set up an administration in Palestine for the discharge of all governmental functions without any external interference. As soon as that stage is reached the intervention of the Arab States, which is confined to the restoration of peace and establishment of law and order, shall be put an end to, and the sovereign State of Palestine will be competent in co-operation with the other States members of the Arab League, to take every step for the promotion of the welfare and security of its peoples and territory.

May 15, 1948: Israel’s Declaration of Independence

November 29, 1947: UN General Assembly Resolution 181 (“Partition Plan”)

September 3, 1947: United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP) Report to the General Assembly

February 18, 1947: The British Decision to Abandon the Mandate for Palestine

“His Majesty’s Government have been faced with an irreconcilable conflict of principles. [….] For the Jews, the essential point of principle is the creation of a sovereign Jewish State. For the Arabs, the essential point of principle is to resist to the last the establishment of Jewish sovereignty in any part of Palestine.” –Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin speech to the House of Commons

1945: United Nations Charter

Article 80. Except as may be agreed upon in individual trusteeship agreements, made under Articles 77, 79, and 81, placing each territory under the trusteeship system, and until such agreements have been concluded, nothing in this Chapter shall be construed in or of itself to alter in any manner the rights whatsoever of any states or any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments to which Members of the United Nations may respectively be parties.

1939: British White Paper on Palestine

1924: The Anglo American Treaty

September 21, 1922: House Joint Resolution 322 Favoring the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, July 1922 (see also National Home for the Jewish People, House Resolution 360 (Rept. 1172). Congressional Record, 1922 U.S. House of Representatives 9799-9820)

July 24, 1922: The Palestine Mandate by The Council of the League of Nations

Article 6. The Administration of Palestine, while ensuring that the rights and position of other sections of the population are not prejudiced, shall facilitate Jewish immigration under suitable conditions and shall encourage, in co-operation with the Jewish agency referred to in Article 4, close settlement by Jews on the land, including State lands and waste lands not required for public purposes.

1921: An Interim Report on the Civil Administration of Palestine during the period 1st JULY, 1920—30th JUNE, 1921, by High Commissioner Herbert Samuel

April 25, 1920: San Remo Resolution [video]

1920: Treaty of Sevres

Article 95 specifies the responsibility of the British Government for to put into effect the Balfour declaration, “in favour of the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”

February 3, 1919: Zionist Organization Statement on Palestine at the Paris Peace Conference (includes Zionist proposal for the borders of Palestine, cited from here)

January 3 , 1919: Faisal-Weizmann Agreement [images of the original text may be found here]

November 2, 1917: Balfour Declaration

1907: The Hague Convention IV: Article 42 defines “occupied territory”

October 1, 1906: Egyptian-Ottoman Boundary Agreement

March 5, 1891: The Blackstone Memorial, signed by over 400 leading public figures and major newspapers, urging U.S. President Benjamin Harrison to restore the Jewish people to their ancient homeland, then known as Palestine. “Does not Palestine as rightfully belong to the Jews?” (background)

November 1885: The Pittsburgh Platform: Principles of the Reform Judaism movement, including rejection of Zionism (later reversed in the 1937 Columbus Platform)

April 20, 1799: Letter to the Jewish Nation (“the rightful heirs of Palestine”) from the French Commander-in-Chief Napoleon Buonaparte