History, Maps, Glossary
Timeline & other data

Even something as simple as a timeline can become complicated, when it purports to provide a history of a troubled region. Rather than just present one, we have three timelines for your choosing. 

The first is from Churches from Middle East Peace (CMEP), begins in the late 1800's and continues to 2009.

The second, from the UMC's General Board of Global Ministries site, dates from ancient times and ends in 2007.

Below these is the most basic timeline in a two-page document from American Friends Service Committee; the second page provides demographic and other information about Israel and Palestine today.

A Timeline of the Israeli-Arab Conflict
From Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP)

[Text in brackets was added to CMEP's original text by UMHLTF editor.]
Highlighting of selected events also added.

1896- 1897   Theodore Herzl publishes Der Judenstaat, "The Jewish State" calling for a Jewish state to solve the growing problem of anti-Semitism. First Zionist Congress discusses plans to establish a Jewish state in Palestine.  Political Zionism begins.   

1914-1918   World War 1 - The Ottoman Empire, ruler of the Arab world since the 1500’s, is defeated.

1915   Hussein-McMahon Correspondence- Britain pledges support for Arab independence from Ottoman Empire [in return for military action against the Ottomans by Hussein's forces, which he did provide].  Hussein and McMahon later disagreed over whether Palestine was included in the territory to be granted independence.   

1916   Sykes-Picot Agreement – divides the Ottoman Arab lands into zones exercised by either French or British spheres of influence. Palestine comes under British influence

1917   Britain issues Balfour Declaration which calls for "support of the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people…it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine."

1922   Council of the League of Nations divides Arab lands; British mandate for Palestine is established.

1929   Arab-Jewish riots in Hebron and elsewhere left nearly 250 Arabs and Jews dead and the Jewish community of Hebron ceased to exist.

1933   Hitler’s rise to power in Germany. Jewish migration into Palestine increases.

1936-1939   The Arab Revolt – First major outbreak of Arab-Jewish hostilities. Revolt leads to the Peel Commission recommendation in 1937 of partitioning Palestine into Jewish and Arab states. Arabs rejected and Jews accepted but wanted more land.  White Paper limits Jewish immigration; Jews found the Mossad to arrange for illegal immigration.   

   World War II -   The Holocaust; Haj Amin El Husseini, Mufti of Jerusalem sides with Nazis.  Jewish migration into Palestine intensifies (680,000 Jews in Palestine in 1946).  By 1946, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan had attained independence.   

1946    Hostilities in Palestine escalate, including the bombing of the British King David Hotel by the Jewish Irgun.  

1947-1948    UN General Assembly Resolution 181 is passed, partitioning Palestine into Jewish and Arab states.  Greater Jerusalem was to be an international city (corpus separatum). UNGA Res. 181 rejected by Arabs. Tensions escalate.  Deir Yassin Massacre (over 100 Palestinian civilians killed in Jerusalem village).

1948    British mandate ends; Israel declares statehood. Arab armies attack Israel.  War results in a divided Jerusalem and 650,000 Palestinian refugees [most sources cite 700 to 750,000].  UNGA Res 194 establishes commission to facilitate the repatriation or compensation of refugees.   

1949-1950    Armistice forms basis for what became known as the "Green Line."  Israel holds 77% of territory.  Jordan annexes East Jerusalem and West Bank. Egypt controls Gaza Strip.  UNRWA established.  Jews from Arab countries begin migration into Israel. The Israeli Knesset passes the "Law of Return," which entitles any Jew to full Israeli citizenship.  

1956    Suez Crisis. Nasser’s nationalization of the canal leads to military action by France, Britain and Israel. US forces allies’ withdrawal. Eisenhower threatens economic sanctions on Israel if it failed to do so.  

1964    Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) is established, with the stated aim of eliminating Zionism in Palestine.

1967    Six Day War – Israel launches a preemptive strike and conquers the Sinai, Golan Heights, Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem, which it annexed. 600,000 Palestinians become refugees.  UNSC Res 242 calls for Israeli withdrawal and establishes land for peace principle.

1969-1970    Israel begins establishing settlements in occupied territories.  Jordan drives PLO out of Jordan: PLO forms base in southern Lebanon.  Egypt’s "War of Attrition" against Israel, with Soviets aiding Nasser, leads to the Rogers Plan which sets UNSC Res. 242 as the basis for negotiations.  

1973   Yom Kippur War – Egypt and Syria attack Israel.  No territorial change.  UNSC Res 338 calls for negotiations between the parties. Arab oil embargo begins and lasts for 5 months.   

1974   Palestinian National Council adopts a political program.  Israelis interpret this as staged liberation of Palestine; it comes to be viewed as meaning that a state in part of Palestine was acceptable to the PLO.   

1977   Menachem Begin and Likud coalition win Israeli elections.  Settlements in occupied territories increase. Egypt’s President Sadat goes to Israel’s Knesset and expresses desire for Egypt and Israel to live together in permanent peace based on justice? and calls for Palestinian right to own state.  

1978   Camp David Accords – through negotiations led by President Carter, Sinai returned to Egypt in exchange for recognition of Israel; sets framework for settling Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Arab League expels Egypt.  Israel invades Lebanon, occupies its southern border.   

1980   Israeli government declares Jerusalem its eternal, undivided capital, affirming the de facto annexation of East Jerusalem, and its expanded municipal lines that included West Bank land.  

1981   Israel annexes Golan Heights, captured from Syria in 1967.  

1982   Israel invades Lebanon a second time and lays siege to Beirut.  PLO moves its headquarters from Beirut to Tunis. Reagan Peace Initiative and Fez Summit Peace Proposal.

1987   First Intifada, a Palestinian popular uprising against the Israeli occupation of the territories, begins in Gaza and spreads to West Bank.

1988   The PLO accepts UN resolution 242 and 338, renounces violence and recognizes the right of Israel to exist within its pre-1967 borders.  The United States opens dialogue with the PLO.  Hamas, also known as the Islamic Resistance Movement is founded.   

1991   Gulf War begins in January in response to Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990. Madrid Conference – Israel and Arabs begin bilateral and multilateral negotiations.    

1992   Bush-Baker Administration holds up $10 Billion in U.S. loan-guarantees to Israel (fiscal years 1993 to 1997) in attempt to limit Israeli settlement building.  Israel expels 415 Palestinians suspected of pro-Islamist sympathies to South Lebanon.   

1993   Oslo Peace Process, the agreement between the two sides to make gradual steps towards a final settlement of the conflict, begins.  Clinton hosts PLO and Israel signing of the Declaration of Principles.  Israel recognizes the PLO and gives it limited autonomy in the West Bank and Gaza, creating the Palestinian Authority.  In return, the PLO gives up its claims to Israel’s territory as defined by its pre-1967 borders.  First Hamas suicide attack.   

1994   Palestinian Authority is established in Gaza and Jericho. Arafat arrives in Gaza. Jordan & Israel sign peace treaty.  Rabin, Peres, Arafat receive Nobel Peace Prize.   

1995   “Oslo II” establishes 3 areas in West Bank: Area A— direct Palestinian control. Area B –jointly controlled: Palestinian civilian control and Israeli security control. Area C – exclusive Israeli control. Prime Minister Rabin is assassinated by right-wing Israeli fanatic in Tel Aviv.   

1996   Palestinians elect Yasser Arafat as President.  Israel launches "Operation Grapes of Wrath" in southern Lebanon; Netanyahu becomes Prime Minister of Israel.  Summit in Washington between Arafat, Netanyahu, King Hussein, and Clinton.

1997   Hebron Protocol signed dividing city of Hebron. Israel starts building a settlement, Har Homa, on a hill overlooking East Jerusalem resulting in widespread protests.  Peace process frozen.

1998   Wye River Memorandum, outlining further Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, is signed but frozen. PNC renounces clauses in PLO charter that are offensive to Israel.   

1999   PLO postpones declaration of statehood. Ehud Barak elected as Prime Minister, pledges to work for peace. Sharm el Sheik memorandum signed between Israel and PLO, final status talks begin.  President Clinton attends PNC Meeting in Gaza.

2000   Camp David II – Clinton's negotiations on final status issues between Barak and Arafat breakdown, largely over the issue of Jerusalem. 

Sharon makes provocative visit to Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif.  Protesting Israeli-Arabs are shot by Israeli police.  Second Intifada, a violent and sustained uprising, begins.   

2001   Taba Talks:  Arafat and Barak find common ground but no agreements. Bush inaugurated. Sharon elected Prime Minister. Violence escalates. Mitchell Report released.  Ceasefire attempts are made but broken

2002   Reoccupation of Palestinian areas begins. Arafat placed under house arrest. Occupation of Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

2002   Saudi Crown Prince peace plan, endorsed by Arab League, promises recognition of Israel for ending occupation. UNSC Res. 1397 affirms 2-state vision, welcomes Saudi initiative and Quartet diplomacy. President Bush declares vision for a "viable Palestinian state next to a secure Israel."  Israel begins construction of "security fence" in the West Bank.  

2003   US-initiated war in Iraq. Occupation of Iraq begins. The Road Map is released by the US, UN, Russia and the EU. Geneva Accords and People’s Voice Initiative released.      

2004   Sharon announces unilateral Gaza withdrawal plan and gains U.S. support.  Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat dies. 

International Court of Justice rules that the route of Israel’s "separation barrier" violates international law.  

2005    Mahmoud Abbas elected President of the Palestinian Authority on a non-violent platform.  Second Intifada ends with Sharm el-Sheikh summit in February and declaration of cease-fire by militant groups in March.  In State of the Union address Bush recommits to two-state solution and asks Congress for additional aid to the Palestinians.  Gaza withdrawal is completed in September.   

2006    Prime Minister Sharon suffers a serious stroke; Deputy PM Ehud Olmert assumes power.  Hamas, a State Department-designated foreign terrorist organization, wins majority in the Palestinian Legislative Council elections.  Escalation of Israeli-Palestinian violence in Gaza and abduction of Israeli Corporal Gilad Shalit [as of July 2010 still being held, presumed in Gaza]. 

Hezbollah-Israel conflict erupts in the summer following kidnapping of Israeli soldiers; month-long war ends with a cease-fire on August 14.  

2007   Mecca Agreement, brokered by Saudi Arabia, reached between Hamas and Fatah.  Palestinian Unity Government formed in March.   Arab League relaunches its Peace Proposal.
Hamas takeover of Gaza in June, leads to breakup of unity government and appointment of Salam Fayyad as new PM of PA.

Former British PM Tony Blair is appointed the Quartet’s Mid-east peace envoy and tasked with addressing economic and development issues in the territories.

President Bush announces Mid-east peace conference. The conference takes place in Annapolis without Hamas and with all Arab League nations participating including Syria and Saudi Arabia. Syria participates on the condition that a Syria-Israeli track will be pursued in the upcoming peace talks.  Annapolis concludes with PM Olmert and President Abbas agreeing to a "joint understanding" to "make every effort to conclude an agreement before the end of 2008." 

An international donors conference in Paris earns $7.4 billion for the PA.

2008   In January, President Bush makes his first visit to the Holy Land as president. Also in January, Israel closes all border crossings with Gaza to halt Palestinian rocket attacks. Palestinian militants bomb the Rafah border and tens of thousands of Gazans cross the border into Egypt.

In May, Israelis celebrate Israel's 60th anniversary and Palestinians reflect on the 60th anniversary of the "Nakba." Also in May, Israel publicizes that they are in negotiations with Syria via Turkish intermediaries.

In June, a Gaza cease-fire is brokered between Hamas and Israel by Egyptian intermediaries.  

In September, Israeli PM Olmert announces intent to resign and by October Tzipi Livni announces she cannot form a coalition because of Shas party demands  and calls for new elections. 

In December, Hamas-Israel cease-fire expires and violence breaks out.  Rocket fire from Gaza increases, and on Dec. 27 Israel launches Operation Cast Lead.

2009   Begins with escalating violence in Gaza and southern Israel.   On Jan. 8 the UN Security Council passes Resolution 1860, calling for a full ceasefire.  The U.S. abstains.  On Jan. 17, Israel announces a unilateral end to offensive military operations in the Gaza Strip and on Jan.18 Hamas announces a one-week ceasefire, demanding Israeli troops withdraw from the Gaza Strip.

US President Barack Obama is sworn in on January 20.  He and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appoint former Senator George Mitchell as special envoy to the Middle East to work on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israeli elections are held in February; Benjamin Netanyahu becomes Prime Minister with right-leaning coalition government in March.  Obama Administration holds series of meetings and consultations throughout spring, including urging Israel to "stop settlement activity" and culminating in Presidential speech in Cairo on June 4. 

Adaptation by Churches for Middle East Peace from timeline prepared by Rev. Betty J. Bailey

Timeline: Israel and Palestine


ca. 1300-931 Hebrew tribes and Philistines migrate into Canaan. The Hebrew tribes defeat the Canaanites and, after a struggle, the Philistines. The kingdom of Israel is established with Saul as the first king. King David establishes Jerusalem as the capital and King Solomon builds the first Temple there.

ca. 931 The kingdom splits into the Northern Kingdom (Israel) and the Southern Kingdom (Judah).

ca. 721 Northern Kingdom falls to Assyria.

ca. 587/586 Southern Kingdom falls to Babylon, which destroys the Temple and takes many into exile.

ca. 539 Babylonian Empire falls to the Persian Empire. Persian emperor Cyrus allows some Jews to return from exile.

ca. 520-515 Temple in Jerusalem is rebuilt as the Second Temple.

ca. 331 Alexander the Great defeats the Persian Empire. Following his death, the land is subject to rule by Egypt and Syria.

ca. 166-160 Maccabeans lead a revolt against the ruling Syrian Hellenists because of restrictions on the practice of Judaism, the desecration of the Temple, and the imposition of Greek religion.

ca. 142 Hasmoneans (Maccabeans) begin a period of Jewish rule.

ca. 63-61 Romans conquer Jerusalem.

ca. 20 Herod begins improvements on the Temple in Jerusalem.

ca. 4 Jesus is born. He is crucified by Rome between 31 and 33 C.E.


66-73 First Jewish Revolt against Rome takes place. Jerusalem and the Second Temple are destroyed in 70.

133-135 The Second Jewish Revolt against Rome occurs. Roman forces crush the rebellion. The emperor Hadrian renames the province Syria Judea as Syria Palaestina and forbids Jews to dwell in Jerusalem.

313 Emperor Constantine recognizes Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire. Throughout the period of the Roman Empire, Jews are periodically subjected to varying degrees of persecution.

570 The prophet Mohammed is born.

ca. 638 Muslims from the Arabian Peninsula conquer Jerusalem. Caliph Omar provides the Christians of Jerusalem with a covenant guaranteeing their protection and allows Jews to return to Jerusalem.

705 The Dome of the Rock mosque is completed by Caliph Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan.

715 The Al-Aqsa Mosque is built by Caliph Walid.

1071 The Seljuk Turks invade and capture Jerusalem.

1096 Participants in the First Crusade massacre Jews as they pass through several European cities. Over the next centuries Jews face persecution to varying degrees in various European countries including restrictive laws, pogroms, and expulsions.

1099 Crusaders conquer Jerusalem, killing many Jewish and Moslem inhabitants and expelling surviving Jews.

1187 Muslims under Saladin conquer Jerusalem.

1291 Crusaders are evicted from Palestine.

1517 Ottoman Empire conquers Palestine. Small Jewish communities flourish.

1537-1541 Under Suleiman the Magnificent, walls are built around Jerusalem.

1843 First writings of modern Zionism appear.

1856 Ottoman Empire requires people to register land and pay taxes.

1860 Mishkenot Sha'ananim, first modern Jewish settlement outside the walls of Jerusalem, is built.

1878 Petah Tikvah, first Zionist settlement, is built.

1897 First Zionist Congress meets in Basel, Switzerland.

1908 Al-Karmil, first Arabic newspaper in Haifa, popularizes opposition to selling land to Zionists.

1909 First kibbutz, Degania, is founded. Tel Aviv is founded as a Hebrew-speaking Jewish city. Hashomer, first Jewish self-defense organization, is founded.

1914 World War I begins. Ottoman Empire enters the war on the side of Germany.

1916 The Sykes-Picot Agreement divides the Ottoman lands into French and British spheres of influence.

1917 Britain signs Balfour Declaration supporting the "establishment of the Jewish national home…and safeguarding the civil and religious rights of all the inhabitants of Palestine."

1918 World War I ends, bringing defeat of the Ottoman Empire.

1919 First Palestinian Congress advocates incorporation of Palestine into greater Syria.

1920 League of Nations divides lands of Ottoman Empire into entities called Mandates that are intended to lead to the creation of nation states. Britain accepts Mandate for Palestine. Haganah is organized for Jewish self-defense.

1933 Hitler rises to power in Germany.

1936-1939 While previous incidents of violence have occurred, the Arab Revolt is first major outbreak of Arab-Jewish hostilities.

1939-1945 The Holocaust takes place during World War II. Jewish migration into Palestine increases.

1942 Zionist leaders meet to discuss postwar plans with the aim of founding a Jewish commonwealth.

1944 Arab leaders meet to discuss postwar plans for independence and ways to prevent implementation of Jewish control over Palestine.

1945 Palestinians receive representation in newly formed League of Arab States.

1947 UN General Assembly passes Resolution 181, which would partition Palestine into Jewish and Arab states and establish Greater Jerusalem as an international city. The Jewish state would receive 56.47 percent of the land of the Palestine Mandate, the Arab state about 43.53 percent. Numerous skirmishes, road ambushes, riots, and bombings take place, organized by both Jews and Palestinians.

1948 Violence escalates. British Mandate ends. Israel declares statehood on May 14. Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia declare war on Israel. The war results in a divided Jerusalem and some 650,000 to 750,000 Palestinian refugees. The UN General Assembly passes Resolution 194 calling for the cessation of hostilities and establishing the Right of Return for refugees who wish to live in peace.

1949-1950 At war's end, Israel holds about 78 percent of the territory of the Palestine Mandate. The Green Line, set at the 1949 armistice, establishes borders between Israel and Arab lands. Jordan annexes East Jerusalem and West Bank. Egypt controls Gaza Strip. UN Relief and Works Agency is established to care for Palestinian refugees until they can return home.

1950 Israel enacts Law of Return stating that every Jew has the right to become a citizen.

1964 Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) is established. At the time, its aim is to destroy Israel. Leaders of Arab states largely control PLO, which operates out of Gaza Strip.

1967 Six-Day War. Israel conquers Gaza Strip, West Bank, East Jerusalem, the Sinai, and Golan Heights, creating additional Palestinian refugees. PLO moves its headquarters to Jordan. UN Security Council passes Resolution 242 calling for Israeli withdrawal and establishes "land for peace" principle.

1968-1969 Fatah gains formal control of the PLO, and Yasser Arafat becomes chair of the PLO.

1969-1970 The War of Attrition takes place between Egypt and Israel. Jordan moves against the PLO, whose members flee to Lebanon. Israel begins the policy of establishing settlements.

1973 Egypt and Syria attack Israel, beginning Yom Kippur War. Israel pushes back both armies.

1974 Arab League declares the PLO to be the only legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. The UN recognizes the Palestinians' right to sovereignty and grants observer status to the PLO.

1978 Egypt and Israel agree to the Camp David Accords, which create peace, provide for the return of the Sinai to Egypt in exchange for recognition of Israel, and set a framework for settling the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel invades Lebanon, occupying its southern border in response to the violence of the PLO.

1980 Israel declares Jerusalem its eternal, undivided capital, affirming the annexation of East Jerusalem.

1981 Israel annexes the Golan Heights.

1982 Israel invades Lebanon a second time, laying siege to Beirut. PLO moves its headquarters to Tunis.

1985 Israeli government orders withdrawal of its troops from most of Lebanon.

1987 An Intifada, a Palestinian popular uprising, begins in Gaza and spreads to the West Bank. Stone-throwing Palestinian teens attack Israeli soldiers.

1988 PLO accepts UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, implicitly recognizing Israel. The United States opens dialogue with the PLO. Hamas Islamic Brotherhood is founded with a charter based on forged anti-Semitic Protocols of the Elders of Zion and advocating destruction of Israel.

1992 President George H. W. Bush's administration holds up ten billion dollars in US loan guarantees to Israel (fiscal years 1993 to 1997) in attempt to limit Israeli settlement building.

1993 Israel and PLO sign Oslo Declaration of Principles, providing for mutual recognition. PLO renounces violence and use of terrorism and agrees to revise the PLO Charter to remove chapters referring to destruction of Israel.

1994 Palestinian National Authority (PNA) is established in Gaza and the West Bank. PLO and Yasser Arafat arrive in Gaza. Jordan and Israel sign peace treaty.

1995 Oslo Accords establish three areas of control in the West Bank: Area A under Palestinian control, Area B under Palestinian civilian control and Israeli security control, and Area C under exclusive Israeli control. Prime Minister Rabin is assassinated in Tel Aviv.

1997 Israel and PLO sign Hebron Protocol dividing the city of Hebron. Israel starts building a settlement, Har Homa, on a hill overlooking East Jerusalem, resulting in widespread protests. Israel imposes closures on Palestinian communities in the West Bank and Gaza.

2000 Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, Palestinian Chairman Yasser Arafat, and US President Bill Clinton meet at Camp David in failed attempt to negotiate a settlement on final status issues. The Al-Aqsa Intifada begins, following a visit to Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif by Israeli opposition leader Ariel Sharon. Violence escalates rapidly and continues, involving rock-throwing, machine gun and mortar fire, suicide bombings, and road ambushes.

2002 In retaliation for a series of suicide bombings, Israeli army reoccupies Palestinian areas. Yasser Arafat is placed under house arrest. Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah proposes a peace plan, endorsed by Arab League, promising recognition of Israel for ending the Occupation. UN Security Council passes Resolution 1397 affirming a two-state solution. President George W. Bush declares a vision for a "viable Palestinian state next to a secure Israel." Israel begins construction of security barrier in the West Bank.

2003 The United States, the European Union, the UN, and Russia release the Road Map to Peace, which contains a process to guide Israelis and Palestinians toward peace. Israelis and Palestinians acting as individuals, and not as representatives of any government, release the Geneva Initiative, containing a vision for a two-state peace.

2004 The International Court of Justice (ICJ) rules that the Israeli security barrier violates international law. UN General Assembly votes to order Israel to dismantle the barrier. Israel announces that it will ignore the ruling but changes the barrier route according to rulings of the Israeli High Court. Yasser Arafat dies.

2005 Mahmoud Abbas is elected president of PNA. Israeli settlers and troops evacuate Gaza Strip and four settlements in West Bank. Ariel Sharon quits Likud Party to form a new party, Kadima. Ariel Sharon suffers massive stroke and Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert assumes power. Hamas, which is on the US State Department's list of terrorist organizations, wins majority in Palestinian Legislative Council elections.


January 4, 2006: Ariel Sharon suffers massive stroke, leaving leadership in the hands of Ehud Olmert.

January 26, 2006: Hamas movement wins an upset victory in Palestinian Legislative Council elections, threatening an end to nearly forty years' leadership of Fateh-PLO and jeopardizing chances of peace with Israel. Hamas leaders send mixed signals, but vow to never recognize Israel or to give up claim to all of Palestine. Donor countries suspend direct aid to Hamas until they are willing to recognize Israel and participate in the peace process. Mechanism is then agreed upon to pay salaries to PNA employees and to give emergency humanitarian aid, but is not implemented. To pay salaries, Hamas smuggles in cash through Rafah crossing with European monitors' connivance.

March 2006: Over 40 Qassam rockets fall on Sderot, with the number increasing in the next few months. IDF responds by shelling launching sites and raids to kill leaders of the Popular Resistance Committees, Islamic Jihad, Hamas, and Fatah Al-Aqsa involved in the attacks.

March 28, 2006: Ehud Olmert elected Israeli PM at the head of Kadima party Coalition.

May 11, 2006: Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails issue document of national unity calling for a Palestinian state in Gaza and the West Bank and the right of return for Palestinian refugees. Hamas government rejects it; Hamas prisoners who signed it repudiate it. President Mahmoud Abbas announces referendum of approval of document if factions cannot come to agreement .

June 2006: Targeted killing in Gaza and the West Band by Israel continue.

Hamas fires about 90 Qassam rockets into Sderot and other Western Negev communities. An explosion attributed by Palestinians and HRW to an IDF shell kills seven Palestinian civilians picnicking on a Gaza beach. IDF denies that it was shelling the beach at the time, pointing out that shrapnel recovered from the victims does not come from IDF shells.

June 25: Following announcement of truce agreement with PNA, Hamas kidnaps soldier from Israeli outpost in Israel and kills two others. They demand release of Palestinian prisoners. Israel refuses to negotiate and demands release of soldier.

June 27: Hamas and Fatah sign Palestinian prisoners' document, supposedly cementing unity. Israel launches Operation Summer Rain, invading Gaza to recover kidnapped soldier and stop Qassam rockets.

June 28: Revised prisoners' document is issued, supposedly agreed to by Hamas and Fatah. But not all factions agree and Abbas decides to hold a referendum. July 12, 2006 Israel-Lebanon Conflict. Hizbollah launches Katyusha rockets over border into Israel on July 12 as a diversion; crosses border and kidnaps two Israeli soldiers and killed three. Israel attempts rescue; five more killed. In retaliation, Israel launches massive artillery and airstrikes against Lebanese civilian infrastructure and invades southern Lebanon. Hizbolllah responds with rocket launches and guerrilla warfare. 1500 killed, mostly Lebanese civilians. About 900,000 Lebanese and 300,000 Israelis internally displaced. Much of South Lebanon rendered uninhabitable due to unexploded cluster bombs.

July 2006 Israel-Lebanon Conflict: Hezbollah launches Katyusha rockets over border into Israel on July 12 as a diversion; crosses border and kidnaps two Israeli soldiers and kills three. Israel attempts rescue; five more killed. In retaliation, Israel launches massive artillery and airstrikes against Lebanese civilian infrastructure and invades southern Lebanon. Hezbolllah responds with rocket launches and guerrilla warfare. Fifteen hundred killed, mostly Lebanese civilians. About 900,000 Lebanese and 300,000 Israelis internally displaced. Much of South Lebanon rendered uninhabitable due to unexploded cluster bombs.

August 11, 2006:UN Security Council unanimously approves Resolution 1701 in an effort to end the hostilities.

August 17, 2006: Lebanese army begins deployment in southern Lebanon.

September 8, 2006: Blockade lifted.

October 1, 2006: Israel army reports withdrawal, but some troops remain near the border. Israel continues jet fly-overs

November 26, 2006 Israelis and Palestinians announce truce to apply to Gaza strip. Israeli incursions and arrests continue in West bank, as do Palestinian terror attempts. In Gaza, Israel holds to the truce, but rocket fire from Gaza continues.

December 1, 2006: Kofi Anna reports to the Security Council evidence of unauthorized assets, weapons, and armed personnel in Lebanon

December 23, 2006: In a meeting between Israeli P.M. Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Abbas, Olmert promises to improve quality of life for Palestinians and remove checkpoints, but in practice nothing is implemented.


Jan. 29, 2007: Palestinian suicide bomber kills three in Eilat.

February 2007: Israeli renovations near the Mughrabi gate of the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem spark widespread unrest in the Arab world, over false charges that Israel is destroying the mosque.

February 8, 2007: Palestinian Unity Agreement in Mecca. Hamas and Fatah agree to share power, based on vaguely worded agreement. Hamas officials reiterate that they will never recognize Israel. U.S. and Israel insist that the new government must recognize right of Israel to exist, disarm terrorist groups and agree to end violence.

February 19, 2007: Trilateral Israeli-Palestinian-American summit with U.S. Secretary of State Rice, PM Ehud Olmert and President Abbas ends with no visible result.


   1. Jewish Virtual Library, Timeline for the History of Judaism,

   2. MidEast Web, Timeline of Palestinian Israeli History and the Israel-Arab Conflict,

   3. Churches for Middle East Peace, Timeline of the Israeli-Arab Conflict,

   4. Palestine History, Palestine Quick Timeline, 1900-2004,

   5. Palestine Remembered, Palestinian History, A Chronology, Remembered/Story564.html

   6. Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia

Presbyterian Church (USA), 100 Witherspoon Street, Louisville, KY 40202-1396, 800-872-3283, Resource Sheet 1: Developed February 2005, updated March 2006, adapted December 1, 2006, updated by UMC General Board of Global Ministries April 2007