12 articles adopted by UNESCO in the resolution of “Old City of Jerusalem and its walls…refusing the term “Temple”
October 26, 2016

The Islamic Awqaf department in Jerusalem monitored 12 main articles in the resolution of “Old City of Jerusalem and its walls” adopted by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee during the 40th special session which took place in Paris, France. Ten countries voted for the resolution which two only voted against it and 8 others refrained in a secret ballot; Jamaica was the only absent country.

The most important articles included in the resolution were:

  1. Emphasis on the illegality of any changes made by the occupation in the Old City of Jerusalem and its surroundings, based on international conventions such as the Geneva Conventions, the Hague and the resolutions of UNESCO and the United Nations.
  2. Emphasis on what was stated in the Commission's decision does not affect the legal status of Jerusalem as an occupied city according to the United Nations resolutions and the UN Security Council regarding Palestine.
  3. Deeply concerned by the persistence of the Israeli illegal excavations and works conducted by the Israeli Occupation authorities and the extreme settler groups in the Old City of Jerusalem and on both sides of its Walls and the failure of Israel to cease such harmful interventions, requests Israel to timely stop all such violations, in conformity with its obligations under the provisions of related UNESCO Conventions and recommendations.
  4. Regrets the damage caused by the Israeli security forces on 30th October 2014 to the historic Gates and windows of the Qibli Mosque inside Al-Aqsa Mosque/ Al-Haram Al-Sharif, which is a Muslim holy site of worship and an integral part of a World Heritage Site.
  5. Calls on Israel, the Occupying Power, to stop the obstruction of the immediate execution of all the 19 Hashemite restoration projects in and around Al-Aqsa Mosque/ Al-Haram Al-Sharif.
  6. Urges Israel, the Occupying Power, to cooperate with Jordanian Awqaf Department, in conformity with its obligations under the provisions of the UNESCO related Conventions, to facilitate access of Jordanian Awqaf experts with their tools and material to the site in order to enable the execution of the Jordanian design of the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate.
  7. Requesting Israel to remove the light rail from the surrounding of the Old City of Jerusalem.
  8. Call on Israeli to stop the plan to build a two-line cable car system in East Jerusalem, the plan to construct of the so called “Liba House” project in the Old City of Jerusalem, the demolition and new construction of the so-called Strauss Building, and the project of the elevator in the Buraq Plaza (Western Wall), the digging of a Mamluk structure beneath the Buraq Plaza (Western Wall), the excavations and construction of new levels underneath the Buraq Plaza, and urges Israel, the Occupying Power, to renounce the above mentioned projects in conformity with its obligations under the provisions of related UNESCO Conventions and recommendations
  9. Calls upon Israel to return the remains and to provide the World Heritage Centre with the relevant documentation in particular concerning the removed and found historic remains, as well as to restore the original character of the sites of all the above mentioned projects
  10. Requesting the Israeli occupation to allow the Jordanian Islamic Awqaf department to implement the project of renovating Dung Gate.
  11. Requests the World Heritage Centre to continue applying the Reinforced Monitoring Mechanism to the Old City of Jerusalem on both sides of its Walls, and also requests it to report every four months on this matter.
  12. Retaining the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

The director of Al-Aqsa department in Jerusalem welcomed the stance of the World Heritage Committee and said: “The article was adopted despite the fierce opposition and the enormous pressure exerted by Israel on the Member States and UNESCO order to abort it. This resolution comes a week after a similar resolution issued by the UNESCO's Executive Board on the 13th and 18th of October 2016 which was used by Israeli to increase their marketing of being the victim and that it denies the Jews’ relation to Jerusalem.