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in The Palestine Yearbook of International Law Online


* Editor's Note In vol. IV (1989) of this Yearbook, the relevant paragraphs of the speech delivered by H.M. King Hussein of Jordan in which he declared the severance of the legal and administrative ties with the West Bank were reproduced (at 297). As noted therein, that speech was never published in the Official Gazette of Jordan, and this is still true as of the date of publication of this volume. Further, it was noted then that the King's speech would pose several legal issues, including the citizenship status of Palestinians living in the West Bank. This case is one of a series of cases that were brought to test the legal status of Palestinians who were Jordanian citizens on the night of July 31, 1988, but the next morning their nationality was in doubt. These court decisions do declare that Palestinians who were permanently living in the West Bank on July 31, 1988, will be henceforth Palestinian citizens. ** Published in the Journal of the Bar Association [of Jordan], vol. 39, issues 6-8, June-August 1991, at 1040-1045. Translated for the Yearbook. All notes and bracketed phrases are added by the Editor.

1. The referenced instructions were issued by the then Prime Minister of Jordan and put into force immediately. They were never published in the Official Gazette. The said instructions provide, inter alia, that each Palestinian residing in the West Bank, may obtain a temporary passport valid for two years, that the importation of agriculture produce from the West Bank and Gaza will be allowed "if needed", and that if schools in the West Bank elect to continue using the Jordanian curriculum, the Jordanian Ministry of Education shall arrange for the final high school tests (a prerequisite to enter universities) and the issue of the relevant certificates. 2. It is to be noted that the said order was issued three days before H.M. King Hussein delivered his speech on July 31, 1988. It is hardly a decree that severed the legal and administrative ties with the West Bank. However, the order is important, for it underlined the policy considerations that led to the royal speech. The government stated the following considerations that impelled Jordan ultimately to sever its relations with the West Bank: the Arab summits of Algiers (1973), and Rabat (1974) and Fez (1982) that declared the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) the sole and legitimate representative of the Palestinian people and that the Palestinians are entitled to establish their own state respectively, Jordan's sincere intention to help the PLO deliver its responsibilities, and Jordan's desire to eliminate any doubt that it has any ulterior intentions to share with the PLO its claim to represent the Palestinian people or oppose the Palestinians' claim to independence in their own territory. Based on these considerations the Jordanian government decreed to (a) cancel the development plan

for the occupied territory, (b) disolve all tender committees that were established within the framework of the development plan, and (c) continue its contacts with other Arab and friendly governments to continue their respective assistance to the Palestinians living under occupation to carry out their development projects. 3. According to Article 9(b) of Law No. 11 of 1989 which instituted the High Court of Justice, the Court is not empowered to review act of state. For the text of the Law, see the Official Gazette (Jordan) no. 3614, Mar. 1989, at 460.

4. Since 1983 Jordanian governments have restricted the movement of Palestinians living in the West Bank to enter and stay in the East Bank of Jordan on the ground that the outflow of Palestinians to the East Bank would empty the occupied territories from its people. Exceptions to that restriction include students who intended to pursue their higher education or individuals who had been offered jobs in foreign countries, especially in the Gulf states.

* Piskei Din (Judgements of the Supreme Court of Israel), vol. 41(1), at 197(1987). Translation for the Yearbook. All notes are added by the Editor.

1. "Administered area" is used by Israeli governments to mean the "occupied territories"- 2. A village in Hebron sub-district, West Bank. 3. A Jordanian city to the east of Amman.

4. See the full text of Professor Brownlie's opinion, infra at 113.

5. On the issue of family unification, see Al-Haq report, reproduced infra, at 235.

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