Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls
The Old City (Hebrew: העיר העתיקה, Ha’Ir Ha’Atiqah, Arabic: البلدة القديمة, al-Balda al-Qadimah, Armenian: Երուսաղեմի հին քաղաք, Yerusaghemi hin k’aghak’ ) is a 0.9 square kilometers (0.35 sq mi) walled area within the modern city of Jerusalem. Until 1860, when the Jewish neighborhood Mishkenot Sha’ananim was established, this area constituted the entire city of Jerusalem. The Old City is home to several sites of key religious importance: the Temple Mount and Western Wall for Jews, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre for Christians, and the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque for Muslims. It was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Site List in 1981.
Traditionally, the Old City has been divided into four uneven quarters, although the current designations were introduced only in the 19th century. Today, the Old City is roughly divided into the Muslim Quarter, the Christian Quarter, the Jewish Quarter and the Armenian Quarter. The current population of the Old City resides mostly in the Islamic and Christian quarters. As of 2007 the total population was 36,965; the breakdown of religious groups in 2006 was 27,500 Muslims, 5,681 Christians, 790 Armenians and 3,089 Jews.
Following the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the Old City was captured by Jordan and Jewish residents were evicted. During the Six-Day War in 1967, which saw hand-to-hand fighting on the Temple Mount, Israel captured the Old City along with the rest of East Jerusalem, subsequently annexing them as Israeli territory and reuniting them with the western part of the city. Today, Israel controls the entire area, which it considers part of its national capital. In 2010, Jerusalem’s oldest fragment of writing was found outside the Old City’s walls The Jerusalem Law of 1980, effectively annexing East Jerusalem to Israel, was declared null and void by UN Security Council Resolution 478 and East Jerusalem is regarded by the international community as part of occupied Palestinian territory.
- The Old City (Hebrew: העיר העתיקה, Ha'Ir Ha'Atiqah, Arabic: البلدة القديمة, al-Balda al-Qadimah, Armenian: Երուսաղեմի հին քաղաք, Yerusaghemi hin k'aghak' ) is a 0.9 square kilometers (0.35 sq mi) walled area within the modern city of Jerusalem.