UNESCO World Heritage Committee to vote on Jerusalem resolution Wednesday

Week following ratification of resolution that denies Jewish and Christian ties to Temple Mount, “Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls” resolution to be voted on Wednesday

Old City from the Mount of the Olives

The UNESCO World Heritage Committee will vote Wednesday on a resolution similar to the resolution ratified last week that denies Jewish and Christian ties to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

The Committee is set to vote on the resolution “Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls”, which was drafted by Arab member states as with the UNESCO resolution which claims the Temple Mount is only holy to the Muslim faith. The resolution was sponsored by Kuwait, Lebanon and Tunisia.

The World Heritage Committee resolution reportedly refers to the Temple Mount as a place of worship only to Muslims, and refers to the Temple Mount by its Islamic name, Haram al-Sharif.

Following the ratification of UNESCO’s resolution, several states have committed to blocking such resolutions in the future, including Brazil, Mexico, which voted in favor of the resolution, and Italy. World leadership has also rejected the resolution, including the Director General of UNESCO herself, Irina Bokova who stated on UNESCO’s ratified resolution “to deny, conceal or erase any of the Jewish, Christian or Muslim traditions undermines the integrity of the site. When these divisions carry over into UNESCO… they prevent us from carrying out our mission.”

U.S lawmakers from both the Senate and House published an open letter to UNESCO, the bipartisan letter initiated by Senator Ted Cruz. The letter states “The upcoming resolution at the World Heritage Committee is every bit as divisive as the Executive Board resolution, despite Jerusalem’s inscription as a holy city for Judaism, Christianity and Islam on UNESCO’s World Heritage list,” and calls on the World Heritage Committee to “respect and protect the religious, cultural, and historical significance of Jerusalem and to uphold the values and ideals enshrined in UNESCO’s Constitution.”