Definitions

Jerusalem_Law

Jerusalem Law

The Jerusalem Law is a common name of Basic Law: Jerusalem, Capital of Israel passed by the Knesset on July 30, 1980 (17th Av, 5740).

It began as a private member's bill proposed by Geula Cohen, whose original text stated that "the integrity and unity of greater Jerusalem (Yerushalayim rabati) in its boundaries after the Six-Day War shall not be violated." However, this clause was dropped after the first reading in the Knesset. As the Knesset thus declined to specify boundaries and did not use the words "annexation" or "sovereignty", Ian Lustick writes that "The consensus of legal scholars is that this action added nothing to the legal or administrative circumstance of the city, although, especially at the time, its passage was considered to have political importance and sparked a vigorous protest reaction from the world community." For example, UN Security Council Resolution 478, adopted by 14 votes to none, with 1 abstention (United States of America), declared soon after that the law "must be rescinded". This resolution called upon member states to withdraw their diplomatic missions from the city.

Text of the Law

"Basic Law: Jerusalem, Capital of Israel

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel:

1. Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel.

Seat of the President, the Knesset, the Government and the Supreme Court:

2. Jerusalem is the seat of the President of the State, the Knesset, the Government and the Supreme Court.

Protection of Holy Places:

3. The Holy Places shall be protected from desecration and any other violation and from anything likely to violate the freedom of access of the members of the different religions to the places sacred to them or their feelings towards those places.

Development of Jerusalem:

4. (a) The Government shall provide for the development and prosperity of Jerusalem and the well-being of its inhabitants by allocating special funds, including a special annual grant to the Municipality of Jerusalem (Capital City Grant) with the approval of the Finance Committee of the Knesset. (b) Jerusalem shall be given special priority in the activities of the authorities of the State so as to further its development in economic and other matters. (c) The Government shall set up a special body or special bodies for the implementation of this section.

Menachem Begin Prime Minister

Yitzchak Navon President of the State"

Published in Sefer Ha-Chukkim No. 980 of the 23rd Av, 5740 (5th August, 1980), p. 186; the Bill and an Explanatory Note were published in Hatza'ot Chok No. 1464 of 5740, p. 287.

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