A Palestinian proposal to have a United Nations agency declare Judaism’s holiest site, the Western Wall, a Muslim holy site is “an attempt to distort history, ” Israel said.
The proposal will be put to vote by UNESCO on Wednesday.
Six Muslim Arab countries submitted the UNESCO proposal on behalf of the Palestinians. The proposal refers to Jerusalem as “the occupied capital of Palestine, ” according to Ynet.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry called the proposal “an attempt to distort history and blur the connection between the Jewish people and its holiest place and to create a false reality, ” the Times of Israel reported.
Tzipi Hotovely, Israel’s deputy foreign minister, condemned the proposal “This shameful and deceitful Palestinian attempt to rewrite history will fail the test of reality.”
The proposal is believed to have a good chance of passing because the majority of UNESCO’s members have historically supported Palestinian bids.
In six days war (1967) Israeli army liberate The Western Wall, (in Hebrew: Kotel), is a remnant of the retaining wall of the ancient Temple, which the Romans destroyed nearly 2, 000 years ago. A venue for Jewish prayer services and individual Jewish prayer, the Wall is a stop on most tours of Israel.
It is adjacent to the Temple Mount, a site holy to both Jews and Muslims. Despite the Temple Mount’s importance in Jewish tradition, the al-Aqsa Mosque has been under sole administration of a Muslim Waqf, and Jews are barred from praying on the Temple Mount, although they are allowed to visit it
According to the World Jewish Congress, the proposal blames Israel for the recent escalation of violence and seeks to confirm an earlier UNESCO decision that the Cave of the Patriarchs and Rachel’s Tomb, two West Bank sites holy to both Jews and Muslims, are part of a Palestinian state.
World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder said In a statement Monday, “adopting the resolution would exacerbate tensions in Israel.”
The proposal “goes in the face of the UNESCO Constitution, which very clearly states the organization’s aim to contribute to peace and security by promoting collaboration and coexistence, ” Lauder said. “It would make a mockery of that founding principle if the UNESCO Executive Council were to back such a resolution. UNESCO must not be turned into a battleground for conflicts between religions.”