Although Jerusalem, the biblical city of the Great King, was re-unified after the Six-Day War in June 1967 and under complete Israeli rule, many today still question Jewish sovereignty in the entire city. The major argument of those skeptics points to the fact that according to the existing status quo the Muslim institutions on the Temple Mount are effectively autonomous.
Many Christian churches and monasteries also operate in Jerusalem as “ex-territorial” entities. For example, the properties controlled by the Vatican, the Greek Orthodox and the Russian Patriarchates. Even the French Government fully controls its private land within the city’s municipal boundaries, such as Bethesda Pools near the Lions’ Gate and Pater Noster on Mt. of Olives. Their national flags hang proudly on the top of buildings in these foreign enclaves within the Holy City.
Does this reality mean that Israel does not exercise sovereignty in Jerusalem?
Of course not! Needless to say that in each capital city there are various ex-territorial areas that exclusively belong to many embassies…