Last year, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a resolution denying all Jewish ties to Jerusalem. And now they're at it again. The Times of Israel's Raphael Ahren reports that the international body will pass another such anti-Israel resolution tomorrow, as Israel celebrates its 69th Independence Day:
The United Nations’ cultural agency is set to pass a resolution on Tuesday — Israel’s 69th Independence Day — that indicates rejection of the Jewish state’s sovereignty in any part of Jerusalem. The resolution also harshly criticizes the government for various construction projects in Jerusalem’s Old City and at holy sites in Hebron, and calls for an end to Israel’s blockade of Gaza without mentioning attacks from the Hamas-run Strip.
Submitted to UNESCO’s Executive Board by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan, the resolution on “Occupied Palestine” will most likely pass, given the automatic anti-Israel majority in the 58-member body. Its wording as of Monday was slightly less harsh on Jerusalem than previous resolutions, in that it does affirm the importance of the city to the “three monotheistic religions.”
On Monday, Israeli diplomats were busy trying to prevent an European-Arab agreement that would see the council’s European members either vote in favor or abstain in exchange for a slightly softer text.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was said to be making phone calls to European leaders in a bid to convince them to reject the resolution.
According to Israeli officials, Germany was a driving force behind a deal that would see all EU states abstain in exchange for the removal of the most incendiary anti-Israel passages. But on Monday, Italy announced that it would vote against the resolution, apparently ending the effort to forge a European consensus.
“This [Italian stance] is without a doubt a positive development, which should tell the Germans that negotiating over a joint text with the Arabs is a mistake not just in Israel’s view but also in the eyes of several countries in the European Union,” Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama-Hacohen, told The Times of Israel...