So says the BBC:
Israel has occupied East Jerusalem since 1967. It has annexed the area and sees it as its exclusive domain.
Under international law the area is considered to be occupied territory.
The area is often called Arab East Jerusalem because the majority of its residents are Palestinian, and Palestinians hope to make it their future capital.
And then you have this excerpt from the new novel by Elias Khoury, "Gate of the Sun":
On Palestinian identity before 1948, Khalil admits to Yunes: "Palestine was the cities - Haifa, Jaffa, Jerusalem and Acre. In them we could feel something called Palestine. The villages were like all villages. . . . The truth is that those who occupied Palestine made us discover the country as we were losing it."