Excluded Palestinians: Mediator Gatekeeping in the Israeli–Palestinian Conflict

PRIO Report

Jensehaugen, Jørgen (2022) Excluded Palestinians: Mediator Gatekeeping in the Israeli–Palestinian Conflict. FAIR Case Brief: 2. Oslo: PRIO.

The core of the Arab–Israeli conflict is the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians dating back to the 1940s. The history of peace negotiations has been marked by Palestinian exclusion. Only in 1993 – in the Oslo Process – were the Palestinians included as an independent party to negotiations. The dilemma of inclusion/exclusion is one of many central problems in Arab–Israeli peacemaking, and it has been present from the outset of the conflict. In this case brief I use three instances of international mediated involvement in the conflict to highlight how mediation gatekeeping has served to exclude Palestinians, either as a people, as a political unit, or as a spoiler group. The three historical phases used in this brief span the 1940s, the 1970s, and the 2000s. By highlighting how Palestinians have been excluded and the mediators’ role in these exclusionary negotiation formats, this brief sheds light on how the mediation terms of reference are core to understanding peacemaking dynamics.

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