Hebron is the largest city in the West Bank with a population of around 170 000 people. The name “Hebron” traces back to two Semitic roots, which coalesce in the form ḥbr, having reflexes in Hebrew and denoting a range of meanings from “colleague”, “unite” or “friend”. In the proper name Hebron, the original sense may have been alliance.


The city is divided into two sectors: one controlled by the Palestinian Authority and another one, roughly 20% of the city, administered by Israel. The city is most notable for containing the traditional burial site of the biblical Patriarchs and Matriarchs, within the Cave of the Patriarchs. It is therefore considered the second-holiest city in Judaism after Jerusalem.