Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee
July 7, 2017
Item 41 COM 8B.1: Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town
Thank you Mr. Chairman,
The decision to inscribe Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town on an emergency basis is divisive, confusing, and impossible to justify. The site is not under any real or immediate threat. Indeed, the only urgency here is an urgency to express political anger.
Had the Committee shown patience, this inscription might have represented, at some time in the future, an example of the World Heritage Convention acting as the international community’s best and most important tool for cultural dialogue, mutual understanding and peace.
Instead, the politically-motivated decision today to inscribe only further stains UNESCO’s reputation and further divides this house.