JMCC.org seeks to present the most comprehensive picture of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as possible. |
As such, we have combined British, Jordanian, Israeli and Palestinian population data in the same place. We are deeply indebted to the website Palestineremembered.com, which provides many of these numbers in easily accessible files for the general public.
JMCC.org is aware that these census numbers are contested on various grounds and recommends Justin McCarthy's Population of Palestine for a more comprehensive analysis. We believe, for example, that some British census data excludes Jewish settlements which were illegal by law in Mandatory Palestine. As a result, Israeli census data states earlier founding dates for these communities than we have census data for.
Ottoman census figures are included here as a mirror of the subsequent British census. We are hopeful that our users can point us to more accurate numbers, and we sought to include the Ottoman period in the mapping section of the website to illustrate the dramatic demographic changes in Palestine since that period.
The city of Jerusalem poses a particular challenge. British census data includes only Jerusalem's walled Old City. Post-1948 data begins to include the Old City and its environs, divided by the Jordanian-Israeli armistice line. Once the eastern part of the city is captured by Israel in the 1967 war, its boundaries are expanded to include more Jewish population. The numbers from the Israeli census (denoted by "State" on our chart) are subsequently dramatically increased.
Simultaneously, Palestinian figures only count the Arab population in East Jerusalem, following the boundaries of the Jerusalem District under British control. Due to technical challenges, we have not included here Palestinian Authority Arab population figures for "J2" or the 70 square kilometers annexed to Jerusalem as part of the expansion of the city's borders. These figures are available from the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics.
Population data for Palestinian refugee camps was obtained from both the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (1997, 2008) and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (2007). Users will note that UN data is significantly higher than Palestinian census data. We believe that this reflects the fact that UN data includes all registered refugees related to that camp, while Palestinian census data counts the number of people located in the geographical area.