Dialing code +972
ISO 2 code IL
ISO 3 code ISR
Capital Jerusalem
Main Language Hebrew
Currency Shekel (ILS)
GDP $200.7 billion 51st
Population 7,353,985 97th


Continent Asia
Location Middle East bordering the Mediterranean Sea between Egypt and Lebanon
Land 20,770 km2 154th
Terrain Negev desert in the south; low coastal plain; central mountains; Jordan Rift Valley
Climate Temperate; hot and dry in southern and eastern desert areas
Natural Hazards Negev desert in the south; low coastal plain; central mountains; Jordan Rift Valley
Note: There are about 340 Israeli civilian sites - including 100 small outpost communities in the West Bank - as well as 42 sites in the Golan Heights 0 in the Gaza Strip and 29 in East Jerusalem (July 2008 est.); Lake Tiberias (Sea of Galilee) is an important freshwater source

Neighbouring Countries

Egypt Jordan Lebanon Palestinian Territory Syria


Following World War II the British withdrew from their mandate of Palestine and the UN partitioned the area into Arab and Jewish states an arrangement rejected by the Arabs. Subsequently the Israelis defeated the Arabs in a series of wars without ending the deep tensions between the two sides. The territories Israel occupied since the 1967 war are not included in the Israel country profile unless otherwise noted. On 25 April 1982 Israel withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty. In keeping with the framework established at the Madrid Conference in October 1991 bilateral negotiations were conducted between Israel and Palestinian representatives and Syria to achieve a permanent settlement. Israel and Palestinian officials signed on 13 September 1993 a Declaration of Principles (also known as the "Oslo Accords") guiding an interim period of Palestinian self-rule. Outstanding territorial and other disputes with Jordan were resolved in the 26 October 1994 Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace. In addition on 25 May 2000 Israel withdrew unilaterally from southern Lebanon which it had occupied since 1982. In April 2003 US President BUSH working in conjunction with the EU UN and Russia - the "Quartet" - took the lead in laying out a roadmap to a final settlement of the conflict by 2005 based on reciprocal steps by the two parties leading to two states Israel and a democratic Palestine. However progress toward a permanent status agreement was undermined by Israeli-Palestinian violence between September 2003 and February 2005. An Israeli-Palestinian agreement reached at Sharm al-Sheikh in February 2005 along with an internally-brokered Palestinian cease-fire significantly reduced the violence. In the summer of 2005 Israel unilaterally disengaged from the Gaza Strip evacuating settlers and its military while retaining control over most points of entry into the Gaza Strip. The election of HAMAS in January 2006 to head the Palestinian Legislative Council froze relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). Ehud OLMERT became prime minister in March 2006; he shelved plans to unilaterally evacuate from most of the West Bank following an Israeli military operation in Gaza in June-July 2006 and a 34-day conflict with Hizballah in Lebanon in June-August 2006. OLMERT in June 2007 resumed talks with the PA after HAMAS seized control of the Gaza Strip and PA President Mahmoud ABBAS formed a new government without HAMAS. OLMERT in September 2008 resigned in the wake of several corruption allegations but remained prime minister until the new coalition government under former Prime Minister Binyamin NETANYAHU was completed in late March 2009 following the February general election.
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Life Expectancy 80.73 years 11th
Median Age 29.1 years 88th
Birth Rate 19.77 births/1,000 population 93rd
Death Rate 5.43 births/1,000 population 165th
Sex Ratio 0.77 male(s)/female 107th
Literacy 97.1% 69th

7.4 million


Roadways 17870 km 117th
Railways 913 km 92nd
Airports 47 93rd
Waterways None km
Heliports 3 39th
Airports paved 2 57th


Currency Shekel (ILS)
GDP $200.7 billion 51st
GDP per capita (PPP) $28200 42nd