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The discussion on this page looks first at the recent history of the region, although this does not really answer the question.
Then we look at the current political impasse, and finally at what the Bible says!
Significantly, Jerusalem became holy to Muslims as the site where tradition says Mohammed ascended to heaven (although some claim he never set foot in Jerusalem).
Over this period most of the population gradually accepted Islam and so by the mid 19th century the area was occupied by some 400,000 Muslims, 75,000 Christians and 25,000 Jews [World Vision].
Instead, Israels borders were re-established along the Green Line of the 1949 UN armistice agreements.
This is a line excluding Israel from the West Bank and Gaza (see map).
Homes Destroyed Around 300 Palestinian structures (including wells) have been destroyed in the Jordan Valley since 2005.
Some families have had their homes built, destroyed and rebuilt several times, see Resist Demolition Why this suffering?
Eminent legal scholars, such as Eugene Rostow (Undersecretary of State to Lyndon Johnson and Professor Emeritus at Yale Law School) therefore maintain that Israeli settlers have as much right to live in the West Bank as non-Jews.Now let's summarise the big picture as described in the Bible (see Israel for a fuller explanation): Observation of the world scene confirms the biblical picture.Israel is indeed returning, the land is indeed being blessed, and the nations are surely raging against her (see also Reality).These areas had never formally been allocated to Jordan and so were strictly unallocated Palestine Mandate territory.So since there is no legal ownership of Judea and Samaria, these areas cannot be regarded as occupied lands.