Israel blasted as “shameful and anti-Semitic” the UNESCO designation of Old Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs as “Palestinian heritage sites in danger.”
“Not a Jewish site?” Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu asked, after 12 countries voted in favor, three against and six abstained from the resolution in a secret ballot held Friday in Krakow, Poland. “Who is buried there, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca and Leah, our patriarchs and matriarchs,” Netanyahu said. “Everywhere else in the Middle East mosques, churches and synagogues are being destroyed. Only in Israel is freedom of worship guaranteed.”
The Cave built over the site purchased by Abraham according to the Bible is Judaism’s second holiest site after Jerusalem and Islam’s fourth. Both worship there at separate times.
“We’ll continue to safeguard the Cave of the Patriarchs, freedom of religion and truth,” Netanyahy vowed.
President Reuven Rivlin tweeted: “UNESCO seems intent on sprouting anti-Jewish lies, while it remains silent as the region's heritage is destroyed by brutal extremists.” Opposition Yesh Atid leader, Yair Lapid, called UNESCO’s decision “a despicable falsification of history. Does UNESCO not believe that the Bible is heritage?”
This UN body is notorious for its anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian resolutions. Tuesday, the UN organization carried a Jordanian-drafted resolution declaring Israel an 'occupying power' of Jerusalem’s Old City and denying its right to sovereignty in its capital..