Last Updated: October 08, 2023, 17:26 IST
The fighting between the Palestinian militant group Hamas and Israeli Defence Forces entered its second day on Sunday as Israel claimed to have killed more than 400 militants of the Palestinian group after Hamas massive surprise attack.
The worst fighting in decades has killed more than 200 Israelis and wounded over 1,000, leaving bodies of civilians strewn on roads. On the Gaza side at least 313 have died and over 1,700 have been wounded.
The decades-long conflict between Israelis and Palestinians is rooted in competing claims to territory and includes border disputes and several wars. Several countries including the US have long sought a solution to the conflict that results in two states.
Most international diplomacy promotes a two-state solution favouring Israel’s reverting to a version of its pre-1967 borders.
What are 1967 Borders
There have been several wars ever since the creation of Israel on May 14, 1948, including first Arab-Israeli War in 1947-49.
However, a major turning point was the 1967 Six-Day War, also known as the Six-Day War, where Israel attacked Egyptian and Syrian air forces. In the 1967 war, Israel managed to occupy Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip, West Bank, Old City of Jerusalem, and Golan Heights.
Prior to 1967, the Gaza Strip was under Egypt’s control and the West Bank was under Jordan’s control. Therefore, the 1967 refers to the line where Israeli, Jordanian, Egyptian and Syrian military forces were deployed on the eve of the Six Day War.
In its aftermath, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 242, which called for Israel to withdraw from occupied lands to secure and recognize borders in exchange for peace.
Though the resolution lacked details, but it became the basis for future diplomacy to end the Arab-Israeli conflict. Many countries have proposed a two-state solution that favors Israel’s reverting to a version of its pre-1967 borders.
The two-state solution, first proposed by the Peel Commission in 1937, proposed the solution of Israel and Palestine becoming two separate independent states and coexisting in harmony. However, the proposal has not materialised over the decades despite support from world leaders including US President Joe Biden, China’s Xi Jinping and Saudi Arabia.
Earlier, this year Chinese President Xi Jinping called for granting Palestine “full membership in the United Nations” and said China “supports the two-state solution and the establishment of a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”
Biden last year also said that the two-state solution is the best way to achieve “lasting negotiated peace between the State of Israel and the Palestinian people”.
The two-state solution is backed in the international community as the most feasible of all solutions, as other alternatives simply don’t work in the seven-decades-long controversy.