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Middle East :: Israel
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Page last updated on June 25, 2015
 
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Israel
  • Introduction :: ISRAEL

  • Following World War II, the British withdrew from their mandate of Palestine, and the UN proposed partitioning the area into Arab and Jewish states, an arrangement rejected by the Arabs. Nonetheless, an Israeli state was declared in 1948 and the Israelis subsequently defeated the Arabs in a series of wars without ending the deep tensions between the two sides. (The territories Israel occupied since the 1967 war are not included in the Israel country profile, unless otherwise noted.) On 25 April 1982, Israel withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty. In keeping with the framework established at the Madrid Conference in October 1991, bilateral negotiations were conducted between Israel and Palestinian representatives and Syria to achieve a permanent settlement. Israel and Palestinian officials signed on 13 September 1993 a Declaration of Principles (also known as the "Oslo Accords"), enshrining the idea of a two-state solution to their conflict and guiding an interim period of Palestinian self-rule. Outstanding territorial and other disputes with Jordan were resolved in the 26 October 1994 Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace. Progress toward a permanent status agreement with the Palestinians was undermined by Israeli-Palestinian violence between 2001 and February 2005. Israel in 2005 unilaterally disengaged from the Gaza Strip, evacuating settlers and its military while retaining control over most points of entry into the Gaza Strip. The election of HAMAS to head the Palestinian Legislative Council in 2006 froze relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). In 2006 Israel engaged in a 34-day conflict with Hizballah in Lebanon in June-August 2006 and a 23-day conflict with HAMAS in the Gaza Strip during December 2008 and January 2009. Direct talks with the Palestinians launched in September 2010 collapsed following the expiration of Israel's 10-month partial settlement construction moratorium in the West Bank. In November 2012, Israel engaged in a seven-day conflict with HAMAS in the Gaza Strip. Direct talks with the Palestinians resumed in July 2013 but were suspended in April 2014. Three months later HAMAS and other militant groups launched rockets into Israel, which led to a 51-day conflict between Israel and militants in Gaza.
  • Geography :: ISRAEL

  • Middle East, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Egypt and Lebanon
    31 30 N, 34 45 E
    Middle East
    total: 20,770 sq km
    land: 20,330 sq km
    water: 440 sq km
    country comparison to the world: 154
    slightly larger than New Jersey
    Area comparison map:
    total: 1,068 km
    border countries (6): Egypt 208 km, Gaza Strip 59 km, Jordan 307 km, Lebanon 81 km, Syria 83 km, West Bank 330 km
    273 km
    territorial sea: 12 nm
    continental shelf: to depth of exploitation
    temperate; hot and dry in southern and eastern desert areas
    Negev desert in the south; low coastal plain; central mountains; Jordan Rift Valley
    lowest point: Dead Sea -408 m
    highest point: Har Meron 1,208 m
    timber, potash, copper ore, natural gas, phosphate rock, magnesium bromide, clays, sand
    agricultural land: 23.8%
    arable land 13.7%; permanent crops 3.8%; permanent pasture 6.3%
    forest: 7.1%
    other: 69.1% (2011 est.)
    2,250 sq km (2004)
    1.78 cu km (2011)
    total: 1.95 cu km/yr (39%/6%/55%)
    per capita: 282.4 cu m/yr (2009)
    sandstorms may occur during spring and summer; droughts; periodic earthquakes
    limited arable land and natural freshwater resources pose serious constraints; desertification; air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; groundwater pollution from industrial and domestic waste, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides
    party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
    signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
    Lake Tiberias (Sea of Galilee) is an important freshwater source; the Dead Sea is the second saltiest body of water in the world (after Lake Assal in Djibouti); there are about 355 Israeli civilian sites including about 145 small outpost communities in the West Bank, 41 sites in the Golan Heights, and 32 in East Jerusalem (2010 est.)
  • People and Society :: ISRAEL

  • noun: Israeli(s)
    adjective: Israeli
    Jewish 75% (of which Israel-born 74.4%, Europe/America/Oceania-born 17.4%, Africa-born 5.1%, Asia-born 3.1%), non-Jewish 25% (mostly Arab) (2013 est.)
    Hebrew (official), Arabic (used officially for Arab minority), English (most commonly used foreign language)
    Jewish 75%, Muslim 17.5%, Christian 2%, Druze 1.6%, other 3.9% (2013 est.)
    7,821,850 (includes populations of the Golan Heights of Golan Sub-District and East Jerusalem, which was annexed by Israel after 1967) (July 2014 est.)
    note: approximately 19,400 Israeli settlers live in the Golan Heights; approximately 200,000 Israeli settlers live in East Jerusalem (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 99
    0-14 years: 27.1% (male 1,084,748/female 1,035,525)
    15-24 years: 15.7% (male 628,205/female 599,871)
    25-54 years: 37.8% (male 1,508,860/female 1,443,898)
    55-64 years: 8.8% (male 333,453/female 352,302)
    65 years and over: 10.7% (male 368,318/female 466,670) (2014 est.)
    population pyramid:
    total dependency ratio: 63.1%
    youth dependency ratio: 45.5%
    elderly dependency ratio: 17.6%
    potential support ratio: 5.7% (2014 est.)
    total: 29.9 years
    male: 29.2 years
    female: 30.6 years (2014 est.)
    1.46% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 84
    18.44 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 101
    5.54 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 175
    1.68 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 53
    urban population: 92.1% of total population (2014)
    rate of urbanization: 1.37% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
    Tel Aviv-Yafo 3.559 million; Haifa 1.09 million; JERUSALEM (capital) 829,000 (2014)
    at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
    total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2014 est.)
    27.3 (2011 est.)
    2 deaths/100,000 live births (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 168
    total: 3.98 deaths/1,000 live births
    male: 4.16 deaths/1,000 live births
    female: 3.8 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 199
    total population: 81.28 years
    male: 79.05 years
    female: 83.61 years (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 19
    2.62 children born/woman (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 75
    7.2% of GDP (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 68
    3.34 physicians/1,000 population (2012)
    3.3 beds/1,000 population (2012)
    improved:
    urban: 100% of population
    rural: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 0% of population
    rural: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2012 est.)
    improved:
    urban: 100% of population
    rural: 100% of population
    total: 100% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 0% of population
    rural: 0% of population
    total: 0% of population (2012 est.)
    NA
    NA
    NA
    25.8% (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 49
    5.6% of GDP (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 57
    definition: age 15 and over can read and write
    total population: 97.8%
    male: 98.7%
    female: 96.8% (2011 est.)
    total: 16 years
    male: 15 years
    female: 16 years (2012)
    total: 12.1%
    male: 11.6%
    female: 12.7% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 90
  • Government :: ISRAEL

  • conventional long form: State of Israel
    conventional short form: Israel
    local long form: Medinat Yisra'el
    local short form: Yisra'el
    parliamentary democracy
    name: Jerusalem: note - Israel proclaimed Jerusalem as its capital in 1950, but the US, like all other countries, maintains its embassy in Tel Aviv
    geographic coordinates: 31 46 N, 35 14 E
    time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    daylight saving time: +1hr, begins Friday before the last Sunday in March; ends the last Sunday in October
    6 districts (mehozot, singular - mehoz); Central, Haifa, Jerusalem, Northern, Southern, Tel Aviv
    14 May 1948 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration)
    Independence Day, 14 May (1948); note - Israel declared independence on 14 May 1948, but the Jewish calendar is lunar and the holiday may occur in April or May
    no formal constitution; some functions of a constitution are filled by the Declaration of Establishment (1948), the Basic Laws of the Parliament (Knesset), and the Israeli citizenship law (as of 2013)
    mixed legal system of English common law, British Mandate regulations, and Jewish, Christian, and Muslim religious laws
    has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; withdrew acceptance of ICCt jurisdiction in 2002
    18 years of age; universal
    chief of state: President Reuben RIVLIN (since 24 July 2014)
    head of government: Prime Minister Binyamin "Bibi" NETANYAHU (since 31 March 2009)
    cabinet: Cabinet selected by prime minister and approved by the Knesset
    elections: president largely a ceremonial role and is elected by the Knesset for a seven-year term (one-term limit); election last held 10 June 2014 (next to be held in 2021 but can be called earlier); following legislative elections, the president, in consultation with party leaders, assigns the task of forming a governing coalition to a Knesset member whom he or she determines is most likely to accomplish that task; Knesset narrowly approves Prime Minister NETANYAHU's new Cabinet on 14 May 2015
    election results: Reuven RIVLIN elected president in second round; number of votes in first round - Reuven RIVLIN 44, Meir SHEETRIT 31, Dalia ITZIK 28, Dalia DORNER 13, other/invalid 3; number of votes in second round - Reuven RIVLIN 63, Meir SHEETRIT 53, other/invalid 3
    description: unicameral Knesset (120 seats; members directly elected in a single nationwide constituency by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)
    elections: last held on 17 March 2015 (next to be held in 2019, but can be called earlier)
    election results: percent of vote by party - Likud 23.4%, Zionist Camp 18.7%, Joint List 10.5%, Yesh Atid 8.8%, Kukanu 7.5%, Bayit Yehudi 6.7%, Shas, 5.7%, Israel Beitenu 5.1%, United Torah Judaism 5%, Meretz 3.9%, Yachad 3%, other 1.7%; seats by party - Likud 30, Zionist Camp 24, Joint List 13, Yesh Atid 11, Kulanu 10, Bayit Yehudi 8, Shas 7, Yisrael Beitenu 6, , United Torah Judaism 6, Meretz 5
    highest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of the chief justice and 14 judges)
    judge selection and term of office: judges selected by the Judicial Selection Committee, made up of all three branches of the government and chaired by the Minister of Justice; judges can serve up to mandatory retirement age of 70
    subordinate courts: district and magistrate courts; national and regional labor courts; special and religious courts
    Balad [Jamal ZAHALKA]
    Democratic Front for Peace and Equality (HADASH) [Muhammad BARAKEH]
    Kadima [Shaul MOFAZ]
    Kulanu [Moshe KAHLON]
    Labor Party [Isaac HERZOG]
    Likud [Binyamin NETANYAHU]
    National Union [Uri ARIEL]
    SHAS [Eliyahu YISHAI]
    The Jewish Home (Bayit Yehudi) [Naftali BENNETT]
    The Movement (Hatnuah) [Tzipora "Tzipi" LIVNI]
    The New Movement-Meretz [Haim ORON]
    The Zionist Camp (established for March 2015 election purposes)
    United Arab List-Ta'al [Ibrahim SARSUR]
    United Torah Judaism or UTJ [Yaakov LITZMAN] (an alliance of three parties)
    Yesh Atid [Yair LAPID]
    Yisrael Beiteinu or YB [Avigdor LIEBERMAN]
    Breaking the Silence [Yehuda SHAUL, Executive Director] collects testimonies from soldiers who served in the West Bank and Gaza Strip
    B'Tselem [Jessica MONTELL, Executive Director] monitors human rights abuses
    Peace Now [Yariv OPPENHEIMER, Secretary General] supports territorial concessions in the West Bank and Gaza Strip
    YESHA Council [Danny DAYAN, Chairman] promotes settler interests and opposes territorial compromise
    BIS, BSEC (observer), CE (observer), CERN, CICA, EBRD, FAO, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW (signatory), OSCE (partner), Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, SELEC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
    chief of mission: Ambassador Ron DERMER (since 3 December 2013)
    chancery: 3514 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
    telephone: [1] (202) 364-5500
    FAX: [1] (202) 364-5607
    consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco
    chief of mission: Ambassador Daniel B. SHAPIRO (since 8 July 2011)
    embassy: 71 Hayarkon Street, Tel Aviv 6343229
    telephone: [972] (3) 519-7475
    FAX: [972] (3) 516-4390
    consulate(s) general: Jerusalem; note - an independent US mission, established in 1928, whose members are not accredited to a foreign government
    white with a blue hexagram (six-pointed linear star) known as the Magen David (Star of David or Shield of David) centered between two equal horizontal blue bands near the top and bottom edges of the flag; the basic design resembles a traditional Jewish prayer shawl (tallit), which is white with blue stripes; the hexagram as a Jewish symbol dates back to medieval times
    Star of David (Magen David), menorah (seven-branched lampstand); national colors: blue, white
    name: "Hatikvah" (The Hope)
    lyrics/music: Naftali Herz IMBER/traditional, arranged by Samuel COHEN
    note: adopted 2004, unofficial since 1948; used as the anthem of the Zionist movement since 1897; the 1888 arrangement by Samuel COHEN is thought to be based on the Romanian folk song "Carul cu boi" (The Ox Driven Cart)
  • Economy :: ISRAEL

  • Israel has a technologically advanced market economy. Cut diamonds, high-technology equipment, and pharmaceuticals are among the leading exports. Its major imports include crude oil, grains, raw materials, and military equipment. Israel usually posts sizable trade deficits, which are covered by tourism and other service exports, as well as significant foreign investment inflows. Between 2004 and 2013, growth averaged nearly 5% per year, led by exports. The global financial crisis of 2008-09 spurred a brief recession in Israel, but the country entered the crisis with solid fundamentals, following years of prudent fiscal policy and a resilient banking sector. Israel's economy also has weathered the Arab Spring because strong trade ties outside the Middle East have insulated the economy from spillover effects. Slowing demand domestically and internationally and reduced investment due to uncertainties caused by the Gaza conflict in summer 2014 have reduced GDP growth to about 2% during 2014. Natural gas fields discovered off Israel's coast since 2009 have brightened Israel's energy security outlook. The Tamar and Leviathan fields were some of the world's largest offshore natural gas finds this past decade. The massive Leviathan field is expected to come online no sooner than 2017, but production from Tamar provided a one percentage point boost to Israel's GDP in 2013 and a 0.5% boost in 2014. In mid-2011, public protests arose around income inequality and rising housing and commodity prices. Israel's income inequality and poverty rates are among the highest of OECD countries and there is a broad perception among the public that a small number of "tycoons" have a cartel-like grip over the major parts of the economy. The government formed committees and has started splitting up the oligopolies to address some of the grievances but has maintained that it will not engage in deficit spending to satisfy populist demands. Over the long term, Israel faces structural issues, including low labor participation rates for its fastest growing social segments - the ultra-orthodox and Arab-Israeli communities. Also, Israel's progressive, globally competitive, knowledge-based technology sector employs only 9% of the workforce, with the rest employed in manufacturing and services - sectors which face downward wage pressures from global competition.
    $268.3 billion (2014 est.)
    $261.8 billion (2013 est.)
    $253.6 billion (2012 est.)
    note: data are in 2014 US dollars
    country comparison to the world: 56
    $305 billion (2014 est.)
    2.5% (2014 est.)
    3.2% (2013 est.)
    3% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 131
    $33,400 (2014 est.)
    $33,300 (2013 est.)
    $32,900 (2012 est.)
    note: data are in 2013 US dollars
    country comparison to the world: 51
    21.4% of GDP (2014 est.)
    21.6% of GDP (2013 est.)
    21.6% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 66
    household consumption: 57%
    government consumption: 22.6%
    investment in fixed capital: 18.9%
    investment in inventories: 0.5%
    exports of goods and services: 31.8%
    imports of goods and services: -30.7%
    (2014 est.)
    agriculture: 2.4%
    industry: 25.7%
    services: 71.9% (2014 est.)
    citrus, vegetables, cotton; beef, poultry, dairy products
    high-technology products (including aviation, communications, computer-aided design and manufactures, medical electronics, fiber optics), wood and paper products, potash and phosphates, food, beverages, and tobacco, caustic soda, cement, construction, metal products, chemical products, plastics, cut diamonds, textiles, footwear
    -4.6% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 193
    3.784 million (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 96
    agriculture: 1.6%
    industry: 18.1%
    services: 80.3% (2012)
    6.6% (2014 est.)
    6.2% (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 70
    21%
    note: Israel's poverty line is $7.30 per person per day (2012)
    lowest 10%: 2.5%
    highest 10%: 24.3% (2008)
    37.6 (2012)
    39.2 (2008)
    country comparison to the world: 75
    revenues: $73.44 billion
    expenditures: $81.82 billion (2014 est.)
    24.1% of GDP (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 128
    -2.7% of GDP (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 108
    67.4% of GDP (2014 est.)
    66.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 44
    calendar year
    0.5% (2014 est.)
    1.5% (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    0.25% (31 December 2014)
    1% (31 December 2013)
    country comparison to the world: 148
    3.3% (31 December 2014 est.)
    4.54% (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 168
    $45.46 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $35.05 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 53
    $153.5 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $155.6 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 47
    $204 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $193.2 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 42
    $148.4 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
    $145 billion (31 December 2011)
    $218.1 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    $11.49 billion (2014 est.)
    $6.893 billion (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 27
    $63.21 billion (2014 est.)
    $61.96 billion (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 54
    machinery and equipment, software, cut diamonds, agricultural products, chemicals, textiles and apparel
    US 26.5%, Hong Kong 8.1%, UK 5.9%, Belgium 4.7%, China 4.3% (2013)
    $69.73 billion (2014 est.)
    $71.29 billion (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 43
    raw materials, military equipment, investment goods, rough diamonds, fuels, grain, consumer goods
    US 11.3%, China 7.8%, Germany 6.5%, Switzerland 6.1%, Belgium 5.3% (2013)
    $88.01 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $81.79 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 27
    $99.75 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $95.53 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 50
    $97.05 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $86.95 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 43
    $83.62 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $78.92 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 34
    new Israeli shekels (ILS) per US dollar -
    3.91 (2014 est.)
    3.61 (2013 est.)
    3.86 (2012 est.)
    3.58 (2011 est.)
    3.74 (2010 est.)
  • Energy :: ISRAEL

  • 64.44 billion kWh (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 43
    59.83 billion kWh (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 42
    4.2 billion kWh (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 34
    0 kWh (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 159
    16.25 million kW (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 47
    97.4% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 58
    0% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 112
    0% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 178
    5.2% of total installed capacity (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 59
    490 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 105
    0 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 133
    268,000 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 29
    11.5 million bbl (1 January 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 91
    275,600 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 47
    238,000 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 53
    83,700 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 49
    143,500 bbl/day (2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 38
    6.35 billion cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 49
    7.538 billion cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 54
    0 cu m (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 118
    510 million cu m (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 67
    285 billion cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 38
    62.5 million Mt (2014 est.)
  • Communications :: ISRAEL

  • 3.594 million (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 44
    9.225 million (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 84
    general assessment: most highly developed system in the Middle East
    domestic: good system of coaxial cable and microwave radio relay; all systems are digital; four privately owned mobile-cellular service providers with countrywide coverage
    international: country code - 972; submarine cables provide links to Europe, Cyprus, and parts of the Middle East; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) (2011)
    state broadcasting network, operated by the Israel Broadcasting Authority (IBA), broadcasts on 2 channels, one in Hebrew and the other in Arabic; 5 commercial channels including a channel broadcasting in Russian, a channel broadcasting Knesset proceedings, and a music channel supervised by a public body; multi-channel satellite and cable TV packages provide access to foreign channels; IBA broadcasts on 8 radio networks with multiple repeaters and Israel Defense Forces Radio broadcasts over multiple stations; about 15 privately owned radio stations; overall more than 100 stations and repeater stations (2008)
    AM 23, FM 15, shortwave 0 (2010)
    7 (2009)
    .il
    2.483 million (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 36
    4.525 million (2009)
    country comparison to the world: 49
  • Transportation :: ISRAEL

  • 47 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 94
    total: 29
    over 3,047 m: 2
    2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 6
    914 to 1,523 m: 11
    under 914 m: 5 (2013)
    total: 18
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
    914 to 1,523 m: 3
    under 914 m:
    14 (2013)
    3 (2013)
    gas 763 km; oil 442 km; refined products 261 km (2013)
    total: 975 km
    standard gauge: 975 km 1.435-m gauge (2008)
    country comparison to the world: 89
    total: 18,566 km
    paved: 18,566 km (includes 449 km of expressways) (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 115
    total: 8
    by type: cargo 1, container 7
    registered in other countries: 48 (Bermuda 3, Georgia 1, Honduras 1, Liberia 34, Malta 3, Moldova 2, Panama 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 3) (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 120
    major seaport(s): Ashdod, Elat (Eilat), Hadera, Haifa
    container port(s) TEUs): Ashdod (1,176,000), Haifa (1,238,000)
  • Military :: ISRAEL

  • Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Israel Naval Force (IN), Israel Air Force (IAF) (2010)
    18 years of age for compulsory (Jews, Druzes) military service; 17 years of age for voluntary (Christians, Muslims, Circassians) military service; both sexes are obligated to military service; conscript service obligation - 36 months for enlisted men, 21 months for enlisted women, 48 months for officers; pilots commit to 9 years service; reserve obligation to age 41-51 (men), 24 (women) (2013)
    males age 16-49: 1,797,960
    females age 16-49: 1,713,230 (2010 est.)
    males age 16-49: 1,517,510
    females age 16-49: 1,446,132 (2010 est.)
    male: 62,304
    female: 59,418 (2010 est.)
    5.69% of GDP (2012)
    5.87% of GDP (2011)
    5.69% of GDP (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 5
  • Transnational Issues :: ISRAEL

  • West Bank and Gaza Strip are Israeli-occupied with current status subject to the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement - permanent status to be determined through further negotiation; Israel continues construction of a "seam line" separation barrier along parts of the Green Line and within the West Bank; Israel withdrew its settlers and military from the Gaza Strip and from four settlements in the West Bank in August 2005; Golan Heights is Israeli-occupied (Lebanon claims the Shab'a Farms area of Golan Heights); since 1948, about 350 peacekeepers from the UN Truce Supervision Organization headquartered in Jerusalem monitor ceasefires, supervise armistice agreements, prevent isolated incidents from escalating, and assist other UN personnel in the region
    refugees (country of origin): 35,214 (Eritrea); 12,542 (Sudan) (2013)
    stateless persons: 10 (2014)
    increasingly concerned about ecstasy, cocaine, and heroin abuse; drugs arrive in country from Lebanon and, increasingly, from Jordan; money-laundering center
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