The State of Israel, is a country in the Middle East, on the southeastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea and the northern shore of the Red Sea.
It has land borders with Lebanon to the north, Syria to the northeast, Jordan on the east, the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip to the east and west, respectively, and Egypt to the southwest.
The country contains geographically diverse features within its relatively small area.
Israel’s financial and technology center is Tel Aviv, while its seat of government and proclaimed capital is Jerusalem, although the state’s sovereignty over the city of Jerusalem is internationally unrecognized.
On 29 November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a Partition Plan for Mandatory Palestine. This specified borders for new Arab and Jewish states and an area of Jerusalem which was to be administered by the UN under an international regime.
The end of the British Mandate for Palestine was set for midnight on 14 May 1948. That day, David Ben-Gurion, the executive head of the Zionist Organization and president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, declared “the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz Israel, to be known as the State of Israel”, which would start to function from the termination of the mandate. The borders of the new state were not specified in the declaration. Neighboring Arab armies invaded the former British mandate on the next day and fought the Israeli forces.
Israel has since fought several wars with neighboring Arab states, in the course of which it has occupied the West Bank, Sinai Peninsula (1956–57, 1967–82), part of Southern Lebanon (1982–2000), Gaza Strip (1967–2005; still considered occupied after 2005 disengagement) and the Golan Heights. It extended its laws to the Golan Heights and East Jerusalem, but not the West Bank.
Efforts to resolve the Israeli–Palestinian conflict have not resulted in peace.
However, peace treaties between Israel and both Egypt and Jordan have successfully been signed.
Israel’s occupation of Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem is the world’s longest military occupation in modern times.
The population of Israel was estimated in 2016 to be 8,602,000 people. It is the world’s only Jewish-majority state, with 6,430,500 citizens, or 74.8%, being designated as Jewish.
In its Basic Laws, Israel defines itself as a Jewish and democratic state.
Israel is a representative democracy with a parliamentary system, proportional representation and universal suffrage.
The prime minister is head of government and the Knesset is the legislature.
The country has a highly skilled workforce and is among the most educated countries in the world, with the one of the highest percentage of its citizens holding a tertiary education degree.
Israel has the highest standard of living in the Middle East and the third highest in Asia, and has one of the highest life expectancies in the world.
Courtesy: Flag and Extracts from Wikipedia