The Judea & Samaria military commander, in accordance with the international law regarding belligerent occupation, is responsible for the various holy sites in the area. This, also by force of The Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict of 1954, to which Israel is a state party.
Accordingly, the military commander issued The Protection of Holy Sites Order (Judea & Samaria) (No. 327), 1969, which is meant to ensure free access to members of all religions to their respective holy sites, as well as protect the sites themselves.
This order gives an appointed authority the responsibility for the protection and management of holy sites, including the authority to establish codes of conduct, appoint guards and to issue the rules necessary for it to carry out its functions.
The Order Creating the Civil Administration (Judea & Samaria) (No.947), 1981 granted these responsibilities to the civil administration, which appointed the staff-officer of religions to carry them out.
In 1995, as part of the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreements on the West Bank and Gaza Strip of 1995, the two parties reached an agreement regarding the administration of holy sites. Article 32 to the agreement stipulates that the authority in holy sites within areas A and B would be transferred to the newly formed Palestinian authority, while in area C the authority would remain Israeli till a final agreement could be reached regarding the area. The parties agreed to maintain the holy sites in their respective areas, protect them and protect the access and freedom of worship for members of all religions.
Despite the aforementioned rule, certain areas such as Rachel’s tomb and the Jordan Baptism site have unique arrangements, agreed on by the parties in the interim and other agreements. These arrangements include the general responsibility for the site, the identity of the party responsible for the security of the site, access to the site and more.