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The tug of war over the status of Jerusalem: Leaders, strategies and outcomes.

Journal article
Authors Ellen Lust
A.F.K. Organski
Published in International Interactions
Volume 23
Pages 333-350
ISSN 0305-0629
Publication year 2008
Published at Department of Political Science
Pages 333-350
Language en
Keywords Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Jerusalem, Arafat, Netanyahu, Rabin, Peres
Subject categories Political Science


This analysis of the Middle East negotiations on Jerusalem has two purposes. First it forecasts and analyzes the potential settlement over the future status of Jerusalem. Second it uses this issue to examine whether political leadership or coalitional structures play the major role in determining political outcomes. The analyses conclude that coalitional politics have a significant impact on the nature and stability of negotiated outcomes, while political leadership plays only a minor role. Specifically, under Rabin and Peres, a stable arrangement over Jerusalem's future was expected. Jerusalem would remain under Israeli control, and this with the agreement of Arafat and the Palestinian National Authority. Under Netanyahu, Israel continues to control Jerusalem, but now with the bitter opposition of all Palestinian forces. Indeed, the analysis shows that even after Netanyahu and other key Israeli actors become willing to make dramatic concessions, no peaceful settlement over the city's future remains possible.

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