A view of St. Mary Magdalene Church, the Dome of the Rock, and much of the Old City from the Mount of Olives

East Jerusalem represents the eastern half of the once divided city and became the focus of Palestinian settlement around the Old City of Jerusalem in the period after the Second World War and Israeli independence in 1948. Since East Jerusalem fell under Israeli control in the Six Day War of 1967, a large number of Jewish neighbourhoods have also been settled. East Jerusalem is also the location of the first campus of the Hebrew University on Mt Scopus, although the university area and the military base near it were always under Israeli control, even prior to 1967. The area remains a point of contention in Arab-Israeli relations, which has intensified since the outbreak of hostilities in the last few years, and in the current (as of 2015) upsurge of violence some are calling the "Intifada of the Knives", the city has seen attacks on civilians by both Arabs and Jews.

Between the negotiations at Camp David and Taba, various options were explored to give the Palestinians more of a presence in East Jerusalem, which they claim as their capital. The peripheral villages and neighborhoods to the north and south of the city might have been ceded, although the Palestinians might receive less than full sovereignty over them - "functional autonomy," "administrative control" or "limited sovereignty."

In Taba, Israel considered ceding some parts of the core areas as well: some of the "Holy Basin" between the Old City and the Mount of Olives, downtown East Jerusalem, the Sheikh Jarrah Quarter, and in the Old City the Muslim and Christian Quarters. The Temple Mount/Haram issue remained unresolved, with Israel prepared to cede "functional sovereignty" (though not official) to the "upper" area of the mosques, while retaining sole sovereignty over the "lower" Western Wall. However, none of these ideas have been considered by Israeli governments in recent years.




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