UNESCO passes “another absurd and irrelevant” resolution, at the behest of the “enemies of of history and truth,” Israel’s Foreign Ministry explains.
For the third time, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a resolution labeling Israel the “occupying power” in the Old City of Jerusalem and criticizing archeological excavations in the city.
The Jordanian-sponsored resolution, passed on Tuesday, “regrets the failure of the Israeli occupying authorities to cease the persistent excavations, tunneling, works, projects and other illegal practices in East Jerusalem, particularly in and around the Old City of Jerusalem, which are illegal under international law.”
A majority of 10 mostly Muslim countries, Azerbaijan, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Tunisia, Turkey, Vietnam, Cuba and Zimbabwe, supported the resolution, while Jamaica, the Philippines and Burkina Faso opposed it, and Angola, Croatia, Finland, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Tanzania and South Korea abstained.
The text of this resolution was softer than the previous resolutions, an apparent Palestinian concession to garner support for it. In contrast to the previous resolutions, this one affirmed “the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its walls for the three monotheistic religions.” The previous ones made no such mention.
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon rejected the resolution as another empty and pointless measure.
“Nothing is more disgraceful than UNESCO declaring the world’s only Jewish state the ‘occupier’ of the Western Wall and Jerusalem’s Old City,” Danon stated.
On Monday, Danon and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat toured the City of David and the Old City with UN ambassadors from around the world, explaining the deep and ancient connection between the Jewish people and the holiest sites of our nation.
“No faux ‘heritage committee’ can sever the bonds between our people and Jerusalem,” Danon underscored.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry dismissed the resolution as “another absurd and irrelevant UNESCO decision, which serves only the enemies of history and truth.”
“Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the Jewish people, and no UNESCO resolution will change this reality. The decision is sad, unnecessary and pathetic. It should be noted that the resolution did not even achieve a majority of the votes,” the statement said.
Another anti-Israel resolution, a vote to mischaracterize the Old City of Hebron as a Palestinian World Heritage site, is scheduled for Friday.
By: Max Gelber, United with Israel
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