Israel is about to mark the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War, a brief but pivotal conflict that redrew the borders of Israel and the neighbouring states of Egypt, Jordan, and Syria. According to the Jewish calendar, the anniversary falls on 24 May this year, but for most of the world the anniversary will be on 5 June.
Over the five decades since the war, Jerusalem has seen controversy over settlements, violence, and demographic change, yet many of the key sites in the Old City have changed relatively little. Reuters has assembled Israeli government archive photos taken in Jerusalem in 1967, and their photographers have taken pictures of the same sites as they are today. Move your mouse/finger over each image to switch between 1967 and 2017.
In response to the build-up of Arab troops on its border, Israel launched a large-scale surprise air strike on Egyptian airfields on 5 June 1967, destroying almost the entire Egyptian air force. Simultaneously, Israel launched twin surprise ground offensives into the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, both of which were Egyptian territory.
Encouraged by false reports of Egypt's crushing victory against Israel, Syria and Jordan entered the conflict. Israel retaliated and seized control of East Jerusalem and the West Bank from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria.
A ceasefire was signed on 11 June. The conflict was a disaster for the Arab forces, with more than 20,000 killed. Israel lost fewer than a thousand people, and expanded its territory.
Israel considers the whole of Jerusalem – including the Old City and its eastern suburbs – to be its eternal capital, and is set to celebrate the 50-year anniversary of what it calls the unification of Jerusalem.
However, the international community does not recognise Israel's annexation of east Jerusalem. The Palestinians seek an independent state, with the borders that existed before the 1967 Middle East war, and East Jerusalem as its capital. Most Israelis reject a return to 1967 borderlines as a threat to their security.
Israel has announced it intends to build 15,000 new settlement homes in East Jerusalem, despite US President Donald Trump's request to "hold back" on settlements as part of a possible new push for Israeli-Palestinian peace. The last peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians collapsed in 2014.