On This Day: Jerusalem Law passed, recognizing Jerusalem as united capital

The law established Jerusalem as the united capital of Israel as well as the seat of government.

 AN ISRAELI flag with a Magen David on top of it appears in the foreground of the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem’s Old City. (photo credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)
AN ISRAELI flag with a Magen David on top of it appears in the foreground of the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem’s Old City.
(photo credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)

On July 30, 1980, Israel's Knesset passed the Basic Law: Jerusalem, recognizing the country's sovereignty over east Jerusalem, which, until the 1967 Six-Day War, had been under Jordanian control.

The law established Jerusalem as the united capital of Israel as well as the seat of government.

The new law determined that the President, Prime Minister, Knesset and the Supreme Court would be relocated from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Status of holy sites

Furthermore, the new law made holy sites, many of which are sacred to multiple religions, accessible to people of all faiths.

Finally, the law stated that Jerusalem must be given priority in certain matters, such as economic development, due to its new status as Israel's capital.

 MUSLIMS PRAY on the last Friday of Ramadan in front of the Dome of the Rock, on May 7. (credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS) MUSLIMS PRAY on the last Friday of Ramadan in front of the Dome of the Rock, on May 7. (credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)

Controversy

The Jerusalem Law has been rejected by the United Nations and numerous countries as illegal, and is seen by many critics as a means of unilaterally annexing east Jerusalem.