Israel (; Hebrew: יִשְׂרָאֵל Yīsrāʾēl [jisʁaˈʔel]; Arabic: إِسْرَائِيل ʾIsrāʾīl), officially the State of Israel (מְדִינַת יִשְׂרָאֵל Medīnat Yīsrāʾēl [mediˈnat jisʁaˈʔel]; دَوْلَة إِسْرَائِيل Dawlat Isrāʾīl), is a country in West Asia. It is bordered by Lebanon to the north, by Syria to the northeast, by Jordan to the east, by the Red Sea to the south, by Egypt to the southwest, by the Mediterranean Sea to the west, and by the Palestinian territories – the West Bank along the east and the Gaza Strip along the southwest. Tel Aviv is the economic and technological center of the country, while its seat of government is in its proclaimed capital of Jerusalem, although Israeli sovereignty over East Jerusalem is unrecognized internationally.Israel is located in the Southern Levant, a region known historically as Canaan, the Land of Israel, Palestine and the Holy Land. In the early first millennium BCE, the Israelite kingdoms of Israel and Judah emerged, before falling to the Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian empires, respectively. During the classical era, the region was ruled by the Achaemenid, Macedonian, Ptolemaic and Seleucid empires. In the 2nd century BCE, an independent Hasmonean kingdom emerged, before Rome conquered the area a century later. In the 7th century CE, the Muslim conquest of the Levant established caliphal rule, which was interrupted in the 11th century by the Crusades and fully restored in the 13th century by the Mamluks, who lost the area to the Ottoman Empire at the onset of the 16th century. In the 19th century, Jews began immigrating to the area as part of the Zionist movement. After World War I, the allied powers assigned the Mandate for Palestine to Britain, which during the war made a declaration of support for the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine. Following World War II and the Holocaust, the newly formed United Nations adopted the Partition Plan for Palestine, recommending the creation of independent Arab and Jewish states, and placing Jerusalem under international control. In the final months of the British Mandate, a civil war broke out between the Palestinian Arabs and the Yishuv, beginning the first stage of the 1948 Palestine war. The British terminated the Mandate on 14 May 1948, and Israel declared independence that day.
Upon its independence, Israel became almost immediately embroiled in conflict with its five neighboring Arab states, whose armies began entering the area of the former Mandatory Palestine on 15 May, starting the 1948 Arab–Israeli War. Early the next year, the 1949 Armistice Agreements left Israel in control of over one-third more territory than the partition plan had called for, with no independent Arab state created. During both stages of the 1948 Palestine war, over 700,000 Palestinian Arabs were expelled from or fled Israeli territory to Jordanian-ruled West Bank, Egyptian-controlled Gaza, and the neighboring Arab countries, with fewer than 150,000 Palestinian Arabs remaining within Israel. During and immediately after the war, around 260,000 Jews emigrated or fled from the Arab world to Israel. The 1967 Six-Day War resulted in the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, along with the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula and the Syrian Golan Heights. Israel has since effectively annexed both East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, and has established settlements across the Israeli-occupied territories, actions the international community has rejected as illegal under international law. Since the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israel has signed peace treaties with Egypt, returning the Sinai Peninsula, and with Jordan, and more recently normalized relations with several Arab countries, though efforts to resolve the Israeli–Palestinian conflict have not succeeded. Israel's practices in its occupation of the Palestinian territories, the longest military occupation in modern history, have drawn international condemnation for violating the human rights of the Palestinians.The country has a parliamentary system elected by means of proportional representation. The prime minister serves as head of government, and is elected by the Knesset, Israel's unicameral legislature. Israel is a developed country and an OECD member, with a population of over 9 million people as of 2021. It has the world's 29th-largest economy by nominal GDP and 13th by nominal GDP per capita.