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1949 Armistice Agreements
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1949 Armistice Agreements

The 1949 Armistice Agreements are a set of agreements signed during 1949 between Israel and its neighbors Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. The agreements ended the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and outlined Israel's de-facto borders, also known as the Green Line, until the 1967 Six-Day War.

Table of contents
1 Agreements
2 Cease-fire line vs. permanent border
3 Violations
4 Related articles
5 Texts


With Egypt

The agreement with Egypt was signed on February 24. The main points were:

With Lebanon

The agreement with Lebanon was signed on March 23. The main points were:

With Jordan

The agreement with Jordan was signed on April 3. The main points:

With Syria

The agreement with Syria was signed on July 20. Syria withdrew its forces from most of the territories it had control of west of the international border. Those areas were then to be demilitarized.


Iraq, whose forces took an active part in the war (although it has no common border with Israel), withdrew its forces from the region in March 1949. The front occupied by Iraqi forces was covered by the armistice agreement between Israel and Jordan and there was no separate agreement with Iraq.

Cease-fire line vs. permanent border

The agreements left about 70% of mandatory Palestine (another often used number is 17.5% of the original Mandate territory which also included Jordan) in Israeli hands. The rest of the area (the Gaza Strip and West Bank) stayed occupied by Egypt and Jordan respectively, until 1967.

The armistice agreements were intended to serve only as interim agreements, until they would be replaced by permanent peace treaties. However, no peace treaties were actually signed until decades later.

In the following years, Israeli leaders consistently warned against turning the cease-fire line into the permanent border on the grounds of Israel's security:


In each case a Mixed Armistice Commission was formed, which investigated complaints by either party and made regular reports to the UN Security Council. In the years following the signing of the agreements, all of the parties were condemned many times for violations. Egypt kept large military forces in the demilitarized 'Uja al-Hafeer area. Israel, on its side, reinforced the Mt. Scopus enclave (which was supposed to be demilitarized) with armed soldiers, disguised as policemen. Israel also sent soldiers into Jordanian territory on many occasions to conduct raids in retaliation for incursions by armed persons into Israel. Syrian forces launced numerous artillery attacks against Israeli settlements in the demilitarized zone adjacent to the Golan Heights.

Related articles


The complete texts of the Armistice Agreements can be found at The Avalon Project at Yale Law School

A search at the United Nations web site for "Mixed Armistice Commission" will reveal many of the reports made to the UN by those commissions.