Israel’s Legal Justification for both Current and Expanded Borders – A Legal Timeline


Peter Baum

The timeline below is an updated synopsis validating the State of Israel’s legal rights, not only to the current geographical area but also to a much expanded land mass including Judea and Samaria. I have where appropriate given a brief explanatory note – please assist if you believe that I have misinterpreted or am simply incorrect on anything  listed below. Moreover, if you believe amendments and/or improvement(s) are applicable, again don’t hesitate to recommend.

The anti Israel, anti Zionist, antisemitic, and pro Palestinian opposition will undoubtedly mount a challenge citing that Israel is in contravention of the Fourth Geneva Convention. Often cited is  that Israel is in breach of Article 42 ( per 4th Hague Convention 1907 ) and Article 49 , but rest assured that binding , International Law will destroy their any such challenges.

Balfour Declaration, a statement of intent of British Foreign Policy: November 2 1917.

Smuts Resolution :       January 1919.

Officially endorsed by the Council of 10 on January 30, 1919 – Palestine as envisaged by the Balfour Declaration named as a Mandated State.

The Smuts Resolution became Article 22 of the League of Nations Covenant

Paris Peace Conference:       February 27 1919

Treaty of Versailles      :       June 28 1919

San Remo Resolution – the Magna Carta of the Jewish People (April 25 1920).

Became Article 95 of the Treaty of Sevres and retained its validity as an act of International Law when inserted into the Preamble of the Mandate for Palestine confirmed by 52 States of the League of Nations . Article 22 also implemented the Balfour Declaration and the San Remo Resolution. The Mandate has 28 Articles.

It is the Legal official Legal creation of Israel / Palestine adopted by the 52 States and by the Supreme  Council of the Principal Allied Powers

Under this Resolution the Principal Allied Powers charged the British Government (who accepted ) with the responsibility and legal obligation of putting into effect the Balfour Declaration and the borders of Israel / Palestine including Cis and Trans Jordan. It combined Article 22 of the L of N with the Balfour Declaration.

Arab National aspirations recognized to – Saudi Arabia / Hijaz 1931, Iraq (Mesopotamia) 1932.

Lebanon 1943, and Syria – under French Mandate 1946.

Treaty of Sevres, Article 95 ….ratified by all L of N bar Turkey  : August 10 1920.

Franco British Boundary Convention ….identified and confirmed all borders of Palestine    December 23 1920. Agreed by David Lloyd George and Georges Clemenceau defined Palestine as from Dan to Beersheba and also included TransJordan  and other Nations, Saudi, Syria and Mesopatamia (Iraq ).

League of Nations Covenant Article 22    :       July 24 1922

The idea of an internationally binding Legal Covenant was the idea of Woodrew Wilson and contained his 14 points of January 8 1918. Mandate system established and governed by Article 22 – also within the Treaty of Versailles.

Article 5 – Great Britain shall be responsible for seeing that no Palestine territory shall be ceded or leased to or in any way placed under the control of the  Government of any Foreign power

N.B. Great Britain acted illegally by unilaterally dividing  the land between  Cis  and Trans (West) Jordan  – similarly illegally giving  the Golan Heights to France for Syria. Article 6 shall facilitate Jewish immigration and shall encourage settlement by Jews on State Lands and Wastelands.

Anglo American Convention codified into US Law all above :       December 3, 1924.

UN Charter Article 80     any changes to 1922 L of N Mandate overridden: June 1945.

The UN is required to uphold provisions of all previous League of Nations Treaties ‘rights gained through a Mandate will not expire as a result of the expiration of the Mandate’.

This principle of of Acquired Rights once granted are recognized under a Treaty or other instruments do not expire with the expiration of the Treaty.

UN General Assembly Partition Resolution: Not legally binding as General Assembly can only make recommendations.       : November 1947 and May 1948.

South West Africa – Decision on Mandates – upheld UN Charter:  July 1966.

Vienna Convention  Article 70 ( 1 ) ( b ): May 1969.

The rights of the Jewish People deriving from the Mandate for Palestine remain in full force. This principle of International Law would still apply even if one of the parties to the Treaty failed to perform the obligations imposed on it e.g. the British Government in regard to the 1922 Mandate for Palestine. Under the doctrine of Estoppels prohibiting any State from denying what it had previously admitted, committed to or recognized under a former Treaty or any other International Agreement.

The Third Chamber of the Court of Appeal of Versailles:     April 2013.

The French Court ruling found that Israel’s presence in Judea and Samaria is ‘unequivocally legal under International Law’ and that the Palestinians have no right legally to the region unlike the Israel which is legitimately entitled to all land beyond the 1949 ceasefire line.

Peter Baum is a regular contributor of Blitz.

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  1. Congratulations to Mr Peter Baum on such a well-researched article and to Blitz for publishing it.

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