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History of Jerusalem:
Jordanian Annexation of the West Bank

(April 24, 1950)


History of Jerusalem: Table of Contents | First Temple | Second Temple


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In May 1948 the Arab Legion overran the eastern part of Jerusalem and occupied the Old City and its Holy Places. During the nineteen years of Jordanian administration, Jordan refused to honour its undertaking in the armistice agreement to accord free access to the Holy Places and to cultural institutions, and use of the Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives (Section III, Document 6, Article VIII, and Section V, subsection E, Documents 15 and 16).

Jews were barred from the Old City and denied access to the Western Wall and other Holy Places. The Jewish Quarter in the Old City was destroyed; fifty-eight synagogues were also destroyed or desecrated. Thousands of tombstones in the Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives were destroyed to pave a road and build fences and latrines in Jordanian army camps.

Moslem residents of Israel were not permitted to visit their Holy Places in East Jerusalem. Christians, too, were discriminated against. In 1958, Jordanian legislation required all members of the Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre to adopt Jordanian citizenship. In 1965, Christian institutions were forbidden to acquire any land or rights in or near Jerusalem. In 1966, Christian schools were compelled to close on Fridays instead of Sundays, customs privileges of Christian religious institutions were abolished Jerusalem was bisected by barbed wire, concrete barriers and walls. On a number of occasions Jordanian soldiers opened fire on Jewish Jerusalem. In May 1967, the Temple Mount became a military base for the Jordanian National Guard.

In April 1950, Jordan annexed the areas it had occupied by military force in 1948. On 24 April 1950, the Jordan House of Deputies and House of Notables, in a joint session, adopted the following Resolution annexing the West Bank and Jerusalem:

In the expression of the people's faith in the efforts spent by His Majesty, Abdullah, toward attainment of natural aspirations, and basing itself on the right of self-determination and on the existing de facto position between Jordan and Palestine and their national, natural and geographic unity and their common interests and living space, Parliament, which represents both sides of the Jordan, resolves this day and declares:

First, its support for complete unity between the two sides of the Jordan and their union into one State, which is the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, at whose head reigns King Abdullah Ibn al Husain, on a basis of constitutional representative government and equality of the rights and duties of all citizens...


Sources: Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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