According to the terms of the Oslo agreement of September 13, 1993, an agreement on the final status of the Occupied Territories should have been signed by May 4, 1999, settling also the issues of refugees and prisoners. It wasnt, and still hasnt been.

What have the Palestinians, or rather the Palestinian Authority, obtained?

May 4, 1994 The Cairo agreement established the control of the Palestinian Authority over Gaza and Jericho.

September 28, 1995 the Taba agreement, signed in Washington, divided the Occupied Territories into three zones:

Zone A, under the complete control of the Palestinian Authority, comprising in addition to Gaza and Jericho, the towns of Jenin, Ramallah, Tulkarem, Nablus, Kalkilya and Bethlehem.

Zone B, comprising 450 Palestinian villages, with 68 per cent of the total population. The PA has civil authority, but Israel retains exclusive control over security.

Zone C, comprising the sparsely inhabited rural areas and the Jewish settlements, remains under complete Israeli control.

January 15, 1997 Hebron is added to Zone A, but 350 settlers remain in the centre of this Palestinian town of 120,000 inhabitants, protected by the Israeli army.

October 23, 1998 Wye Plantation agreement between Arafat and Netanyahu, ceding 13 per cent more territory to PA civil control. Netanyahu reneges on the agreement, Barak later respects it. Seven years after Oslo, Israel still had total control over 60 per cent of the West bank and 30 per cent of the Gaza Strip (Zone C).

On the West Bank Zone C completely surrounds Zones A and B and it is there that the Israelis have been intensively building new settlements. According to the Oslo agreements, there should have been a freeze on new settlements. When they were signed Israel had already confiscated 670 square km of Palestinian land. Six years later, the figure was 3,000 square km. The huge settlement of Maale Edunim now stretches from East Jerusalem to Jericho, cutting the West Bank in two.

There were still between 4,000 and 5,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, despite promises to release them.

3.5 million Palestinian refugees live in the surrounding countries, most of them in camps.

60 per cent of the population of Gaza also live in camps, as does part of the population of the West Bank.