Located in Western Asia along the Mediterranean Sea's southeast shore, Israel shares borders with several countries and states including Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and Syria. Politically and ethnically, Israel refers to itself as a Democratic and Jewish state. Israel's most populous city is Jerusalem and Tel Aviv is the country's financial center.

Israel's government is a representative democracy controlled by a parliamentary system and a Prime Minister. Among Israel's achievements are its high life expectancy, large economy and exceptional standards of living, considered the best in the Middle East.

Essential Facts about Israel

  • Israel's economy is considered the most durable economy among other developed nations and has also been ranked number one in development and research center investments.
  • Comprehensive growth in Israel's industrial and agricultural sectors have allowed this country to become mostly self-sufficient in regards to food production.
  • Israel leads the world in solar energy development and is also the leader in geothermal energy and water conservation.
  • Because Israel routinely experiences water shortages. they have a highly developed water technology industry that makes them one of the world's leading experts in water conservation techniques and water recycling.

Israel's Legal System

Resembling Western-style legal systems in some aspects, Israel's legal system is primarily a hybrid of historical and religious legal tenets developing under British and Ottoman sovereignty. The "Knesset" statutes and the "Basic Laws of Israel" support the basis for Israel's laws that are further substantiated by jurisprudence and political precedent. Recently, Israeli courts have been exhibiting characteristics of Canadian and American law rather than Continental law.

Israel's Court Structure and Legal System

The Supreme Court, district courts and magistrates' courts comprise Israel's general court system, with the Supreme Court existing as the highest court in the country. Israel also has "special" courts that deal with religious, labor and military justice issues. These courts are governed appellate tribunals that may receive limited consideration by the Supreme Court in certain complex cases.

Israel has five judicial districts: Nazareth, Tel-Aviv, Beer-Sheva, Jerusalem and Haifa, with district courts and magistrates ruling over their respective districts. Any actions outside these judicial districts are transferred to the District Court of Jerusalem.