Conflict resolution in the Middle East : the Israeli-Palestinian declaration of principles on interim self-government arrangements - a history
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This work evaluates the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (DoP), the document signed between the State of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), in Washington D.C. on 13 September 1993, as a case study of the bilateral management of an asymmetrical national-subnational conflict within the context of an international conflict resolution framework. The DoP represents progress in the international endeavour to realise a settlement of the wider Arab-lsraeli conflict, as signalled by the Madrid conference of 31 October 1991. The DoP ushered in a new era in Israeli-Palestinian relations. It is part of a process which, in essence, is the cornerstone of a formal mutual recognition pact which represents a reciprocal acknowledgement of legitimacy, a crucial first step towards finding a broad and permanent settlement. The DoP was only possible due to the abandonment of long-held mutually antagonistic and intransigent positions. Like all political documents, it represents a compromise. This study examines the complex nature and dynamics of the attempts at resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and reviews the DoP to investigate how it transpired, what it means, how it will be implemented, how far it can be used as a blueprint for future peacemaking, and offers an analysis of the findings in conclusion. This study also addresses the wider international ramifications and relationships which will be a prerequisite for the evaluation and analysis of the corresponding policies and responses by the major powers and actors from the international community within the framework of the 1991 Madrid Middle East Peace Conference. Chapter one examines the definition and contextualisation of the conflict resolution case study. Chapter two focuses on the establishment, purpose and development of the DoP, incorporating a thorough examination of the development of the secret Oslo backchannel, concluding with an analysis of the Oslo negotiations within the official Madrid framework as an example of conflict resolution. Chapter three provides an analysis of the DoP as an example of conflict resolution and critiques the meaning and purpose of the document. Chapter four provides an analysis of the implementation process of the initial years of the life of the DoP, incorporating the actual implementation of the DoP to 31st August 1997, including: the Agreement on the Gaza Strip and Jericho Area of May 1994; the World Bank aid programme; influential bilateral agreements by the two with third parties; the Agreement on Preparatory Transfer of Powers and Responsibilities of August 1994; the Protocol on Further Transfer of Powers and Responsibilities of August 1995; the Israeli- Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip of September 1995; and the Protocol Concerning the Redeployment in Hebron of January 1997. The final chapter concludes by evaluating the attempt by the two communities to shape a common future with an analysis in determining the effectiveness of the DoP both as an instrument for, and as an example of, conflict resolution.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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