UNESCO voted on Friday to include the Church of the Nativity in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem in its list of World Heritage Sites.
The decision was announced during a meeting of UNESCO delegates in St. Petersburg. Thirteen members of the 21-strong World Heritage Committee supported the Palestinian bid. Two countries abstained and six others voted against.
Friday’s decision will help the Palestinians oppose Israeli attempts aimed at the “Judaization of holy Palestinian sites,” PA spokesperson said in an interview with the Voice of Palestine radio station.
UNESCO decision has been welcomed by Catholics because the church is in urgent need of restoration, so far hampered by the Orthodox communty. Importance of ensuring its architectural integrity to avoid its ruin, similar to that taking place in the Holy Sepulchre with the construction of the Katholicon. Also important to monitor Israeli attempts to place the holy sites in Galilee under the Zionist entity’s protection.
However, UNESCO decision has angered pro-Israeli groups in the United States. Abraham Foxman, the head of ADL has called the decision “politically perverted”. He called on Washington to reconsider its participation in UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESC).
“With this vote, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee has forsaken its responsibility for protecting the world’s most important and sacred sites, and has proven to be another hackneyed, politicized body. As a result, the United States, which is not a member of the World Heritage Committee, should re-evaluate the value of remaining a member of UNESCO,” he said in a statement issued on June 29, 2012.
On October 31, 2011 – UNESCO had admitted Palestinian membership in a vote of 107-14 with 52 abstentions. The Jewish lackeys American lawmakers had threatened to stop US contribution of $80 million (22% of total budget) to UNESCO for its anti-Semitic action.
Very few Christians are aware of the fact that custodianship of the Holy Sepulchre is in the hands of the Nseibeh Muslim family since 638 CE when Islam’s second Caliph, Omar bin Khattab, appointed the family the responsiblity to control the three Christian sects killing each other inside the church. Omer also gave the custody of the ‘Temple of Mount’ to the chief rabbi of Jerusalem. The site was used as a garbage dump by the city’s Christian majority.
The Palestinians have moved to seek full membership in the United Nations and the recognition of an independent Palestinian state by the global body. Israel, backed by the United States, strongly opposes these efforts.