Lexicon of Terms
 

The Proclamation of Independence

On May 14, 1948, the members of the People's Council proclaimed the establishment of the state. The proclamation may be divided into four sections: the section that describes the history of the Jewish people, its struggle to renew its political life and the international recognition of this right; the operative section, that proclaims the establishment of the state; the section that declares the principles which will guide the State of Israel; and the appeal to the U.N., the Arab inhabitants of the state, the Arab states and world Jewry.

Even though the proclamation is neither a law nor an ordinary legal document, it has legal validity, and its first and third sections were made use of by the Supreme Court for the purpose of normative interpretation.

The second section is the primary source of authority in the Israeli legal system. Some were inclined to view the Proclamation of Independence, and especially its declaratory section, as a constitution, but the Supreme Court stated, in a series of decisions, that the proclamation does not have constitutional validity, and that it is not a supreme law which may be used to invalidate laws and regulations that contradict it.




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