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Palestinians, Jordanians warn against opposition to UNESCO


(JNS.org)—The Palestinian Authority and Jordan are warning members of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee against opposing a planned resolution on Jerusalem set for a vote last Wednesday, Oct. 26.

The 21-member World Heritage Committee is considering a resolution that solely refers to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem by its Muslim name, Al-Haram Al-Sharif, which ignores any Jewish or Christian ties to the site. Temple Mount was home to the First and Second Jewish Temples. The resolution is similar to one passed by the 56-member UNESCO Executive Committee Oct. 13.

On Monday, Oct. 24, the Palestinian and Jordanian delegations asked World Heritage Committee members to submit their positions before Wednesday’s meeting after learning “a few member states are still hesitant whether they can commit to our agreement... or not.

“Otherwise, the delegation of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the delegation of Palestine would, according to the rules of procedure, be obliged to consider other options,” they stated.

The move by the Palestinians and Jordanians comes as several member states of UNESCO, such as Brazil, Italy and Mexico, have expressed regret over the Oct. 13 resolution. However, Brazil, Italy and Mexico are not World Heritage Committee members and will not vote Wednesday.

“The Palestinians and the Arab states understand that after Mexico and Italy, there might be more unpleasant surprises,” said Israeli Ambassador to UNESCO Carmel Shama-Hacohen. 


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