A meeting of the United Nations World Heritage body, UNESCO, scheduled for May 1st, will not mention Jerusalem’s Temple Mount and Western Wall and will refrain from any vote or measure that would discuss the two sensitive religious sites. The decision was made by Arab states, who initially drafted a six-page resolution that refrains from mentioning any Jewish connection to the sites while reinforcing the Islamic bond to Jerusalem.
After concrete efforts were made by Israel to thwart the resolution, Arab states decided to take a step back, and significantly softened the language used, compared to the initial draft. Israel hailed the development as a significant achievement for Israel’s diplomacy at UNESCO, which it considers as one of the most hostile arenas for the Jewish state at the United Nations, and has adopted resolutions that seek to erase Jewish connections to holy sites in Jerusalem’s ancient city.
That said, Israeli diplomats voiced concern, that despite the exclusion of Jerusalem, the amended draft resolution is still rife with political elements and falsehoods that have no business being included in an international organization, especially one that is ostensibly concerned with education and science.