Tuesday, October 18, 2016

UNESCO to vote again

TEMPLE MOUNT WATCH: UNESCO to vote on Jerusalem again after Mexico shifts stance. Mexico’s Jewish ambassador removed from post after walking out of previous vote; Israeli envoy: ‘We’re not giving up’ (Raoul Wootliff, Times of Israel).
In a dramatic turn of events, UNESCO was set to revisit on Tuesday a vote on a contentious resolution ignoring Jewish and Christian historical ties to Jerusalem holy sites, following an announcement by Mexico that it had changed its position on the issue and was utilizing a rare provision to allow for a re-vote.

The resolution, sponsored by several Arab countries and passed Thursday in the committee stage of the United Nations cultural body, referred to the Temple Mount and Western Wall only by their Muslim names and condemned Israel as “the occupying power” for various actions taken in both sites.

The second paragraph is not quite correct: the resolution (at least in the draft that I saw) did refer to "the Western Wall," but only in scare quotes. In any case, the wording of the resolution was very unhelpful and deserves a reexamination.

Then there's this, which is very disturbing: Security Upgraded for UNESCO Chief After Death Threats Over Jerusalem. The chief of UNESCO has been threatened because she knows the truth: one cannot erase Jewish history from Jerusalem (Hana Levi Julian, The Jewish Press).
Security for United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) chief Irina Bokov has been ramped up, after she received death threats over her blunt opposition to last week’s resolution erasing the historic Jewish link to Jerusalem.

According to a report broadcast on Israel Radio, “the director-general received death threats and her protection has been reinforced… These threats were made after her criticism” of the resolutions in which Israel was condemned for “violations” at Jewish holy sites and in which the holiest sites in Judaism are referred to solely by their Islamic names, describing them as holy only to Muslims.

On the last sentence, see above.