Security and Occupation

Focus: Convention on the Rights of the Child

Article 19: You have the right to be protected from being hurt or badly treated

Value: Justice

The barrier dividing Israel from the West Bank is an ongoing area of disagreement.

From an Israeli perspective, the barrier helps protect civilians from attack while from the Palestinian point of view, the barrier is an infringement of their human rights and the cause of much suffering, hardship and humiliation. 

Learning Intention: I will have developed an understanding that all people need to feel secure. I am learning that measures taken to protect one set of people can have a negative effect on the lives of others.  

Success Criteria: I can describe actions taken by Israel to try to protect its citizens. I can describe the impact of these actions on the Palestinian community.  

Activity 1

Watch the video Walled Horizons film from the UN Office for Humanitarian Affairs taking notes as you watch.

Activity 2

Read information sheet 5, Israeli Perspective on Security.

Activity 3

Consider the following questions:

1.      Why does the Israeli government think the barrier is important?

2.      What effect does the barrier have on the Palestinian community?

3.      How does the international community view the legality of the wall?  

Draw and complete the following table to show how different communities view the barrier.  

Israeli Perspective Palestinian Perspective International Community Perspective

Information Sheet 5

Israeli Perspective on Security  

In June 2002, following the second Intifada (uprising) by the Palestinians, the Israeli cabinet decided to erect a physical barrier separating Israel and the West Bank with the declared objective of regulating entry of Palestinians from the West Bank into Israel.

The Israeli government believe the barrier has played a key role in reducing the number of attacks by Palestinians within Israel. 


“The number one overarching concern for Israeli citizens, wherever they are, is security. They want the freedom that most of us enjoy in Europe despite the recent terrorist attacks: to live a life without concern that you may be stabbed, shot, blown up on a bus or have your house hit by a rocket.”

Jerusalem Post May 2016

‘Binyamin Netanyahu has announced his intention to ‘surround all of Israel with a fence’ to protect the country from infiltration by both Palestinians and the citizens of surrounding Arab states, whom he described as ‘wild beasts’.

‘Israeli prime minister unveiled the proposal during a tour of the Jordan border area in Israel’s south, adding that the project – which would cost billions of shekels – would also be aimed at solving the problem of Hamas infiltration tunnels from Gaza, a recent source of renewed concern. He called the border project a part of a ‘multi-year plan to surround Israel with security fences to protect ourselves in the current and projected Middle East’.

Guardian February 2016

‘…there is no doubt that, 19 months after the end of the last war between Israel and Gaza… large scale digging has resumed.’

Guardian March 2016

‘The Defence Ministry has begun the final phase of construction of a 20-foot high galvanized steel fence that will completely surround the Gaza Strip, Israeli officials said on Sunday.’

‘The barrier will extend 65 kilometres (40 miles) around the enclave and sit atop the subterranean concrete wall Israel is constructing around the Gaza Strip to block terrorist groups’ attack tunnels from the coastal enclave.’

Times of Israel February 2019