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Areas A, B and C

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Areas of differentiated jurisdiction established in the Oslo Accords. A, B and C indicate gradations of Israeli and Palestinian National Authority jurisdictions in the occupied Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip as defined in the interim agreements signed by Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) in 1993. However, since then, Israel has ceased to respect many areas and dimensions of Palestinian Authority jurisdiction since its reinvasion of those zones since 2002. The Oslo Interim process created four spheres of jurisdiction in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, defined as follows:

A. Closed Palestinian jurisdiction (Area A): In these lands, the Palestinian Authority has full effective and theoretical (de facto and de jure) jurisdiction. Israeli troops and military withdrew fully until late 2000, when they besieged the territories. Until then, Israel formally did not exercise jurisdiction over this area, except through reoccupation or Palestinian consent. Today, these areas remain under Israel’s control, and several areas are under occasional Israeli military siege.

B. Over-riding Israeli jurisdiction. In those areas, the Palestinian National Authority holds partial personal, functional and geographical jurisdiction, as Israel retained overriding security jurisdiction through activities of Israel’s troops and the Military Government. The overriding jurisdiction encompasses all components and actions that form clear violations of the Convention, as house demolitions, for example, occur in those areas in particular with the Israeli authorities’ full resolve and jurisdiction. This area forms approximately 10% of the West Bank and Gaza Strip and is inhabited by approximately 20% of the Palestinian population.

C.  Where Israel has held functional, geographical and personal jurisdiction and the Palestinian Authority has claimed personal jurisdiction, awaiting withdrawal of Israeli troops and Military Government. The size of this area is undefined; it is open to speculation by both sides, with the continuation of supreme Israeli jurisdiction as the occupying power along with jurisdictional category "A” (total Israeli jurisdiction). These areas constitute more than 73% of land in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and are inhabited by some 24% of the Palestinian population. The bulk of Israeli military, administration and settler violations of Palestinians’ habitat rights in the oPt take place with impunity in jurisdictional Area C.

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