Published: Mon, July 10, 2017
Medicine | By Rogelio Lindsey

Israel Has No Sovereignty over Jerusalem: UNESCO

Israel Has No Sovereignty over Jerusalem: UNESCO

The heritage committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, passed a Palestinian-led motion calling Hebron's Old City an endangered heritage site despite protests by Israel and Jewish groups.

Hebron's Old City is home to about 800 Israeli settlers, who move about freely under army protection, while thousands of Palestinians are subjected to harsh military rule, roadblocks and checkpoints.

The Palestinian foreign ministry hailed Friday's decision a "success" for Palestinian diplomacy.

Subsequent to the resolution, Netanyahu called it in a Facebook posting "delusional" and said that "this time they determined that the Cave of the Machpela is Palestinian, meaning it is not Jewish".

With this declaration, Tomb of the Patriarchs is now the third cultural site on UNESCO's List of World Heritage in Danger that located in the State of Palestine. "Shame on @UNESCO", he wrote on Twitter after the decision taken in a secret ballot by the World Heritage Committee as it met in Krakow.

Rula Maayah, the Palestinian Minister of Tourism, said in a statement it was a "historical development because it stressed that Hebron" and its mosque "historically belong to the Palestinian people", AP reported. "It's a decision that at best stems from utter ignorance and at worst from hypocrisy and antisemitism", Yair Lapid of Israel's Yesh Atid party.

But Israel's Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said Unesco's "automatic Arab majority succeeded in passing the proposed resolution that attempts to appropriate the national symbols of the Jewish people".

Mr Bennett, leader of the nationalist Jewish Home party, also heads Israel's national Unesco Committee.

Following a massacre carried out against Muslim worshippers in Hebron's Ibrahimi Mosque in 1994, Israel divided it into two parts; one for Muslims and one for Jews. Israel condemned the text, although it was much softer than similar resolutions passed in previous years.

Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron.

From a political perspective, the Unesco listing is bound to help the Palestinians as it will elicit greater interest and support from the worldwide community.

The ICOMOS assessment on Hebron, published on Sunday, criticized the Palestinian proposal for ignoring Jewish and Christian heritage in the city, "even though extensive remains testify to these links". "It represents an affront to history", Haley said in a statement. The Tomb is considered the second holiest site in Judaism after the Temple Mount.

It also could bolster their efforts to fight what they believe are Israeli attempts to take over disputed religious sites in the Holy Land. "The Israeli military court system - which all Palestinians in the West Bank are subject to - has a conviction rate above 99%, which raises serious concerns about the system meeting numerous worldwide standards of due process required by human rights and humanitarian law".

The Ibrahimi Mosque has always been a flashpoint of Zionist colonial violence.

She said two Palestinians, including one alleged "Hamas operative", were detained in Tulkarem refugee camp, one Palestinian was detained in the town of Dhinnaba, and another elsewhere in the Tulkarem district.

In 1994, Israeli-American Baruch Goldstein opened fire on Muslims praying at the site, killing 29, before being beaten to death by survivors.

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