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Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, though not internationally recognized as such. If the area and population of East Jerusalem is included, it is Israel's largest city in both population and area, with a population of 763,800 residents over an area of 125.1 km2 (48.3 sq mi). Located in the Judean Mountains, between the Mediterranean Sea and the northern edge of the Dead Sea, modern Jerusalem has grown far beyond the boundaries of the Old City.
Jerusalem is a holy city for Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Often under the name of Zion, it figures prominently in Jewish and Christian literature as a symbol of the capital of the Messiah. Jerusalem's churches and shrines are legion. The traditional identifications vary in reliability from certainty (such as Gethsemane) to pious supposition (such as the Tomb of the Virgin). The most famous and most difficult identification is that of Calvary. Excavations have been made in Jerusalem since 1835, and after 1967, the Israelis increased this activity, uncovering remains of the Herodian period and ruins of a Muslim structure of the 7th or 8th cent. Many of Jerusalem's original streets, including the main Cardo, have been excavated and turned into tourist sites.Read more..