Palestinian Authority/Palestine Liberation Organization

Political Status: Independent Palestinian state (largely symbolic) encompassing the Gaza Strip and the West Bank decreed by Yasir Arafat, chair of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), on November 15, 1988; Declaration of Principles establishing a “Palestinian authority” to assume partial governmental responsibility in Gaza and portions of the West Bank signed by Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin on September 13, 1993; agreement reached on May 4, 1994, between Arafat and Rabin for formal launching of the withdrawal of Israeli troops from certain occupied territories and inauguration of the first Palestinian Authority (PA, or Palestinian National Authority [PNA]) on July 5; extension of limited Palestinian self-rule to additional territory approved in Israeli-Palestinian accord on September 24, 1995; elected civilian government inaugurated February–May 1996 to ...

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