Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee
July 4, 2017
Item 41 COM 7A: Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls
As we have emphasized in the past, these politicized and one-sided resolutions are damaging to the credibility of UNESCO, and greatly hinder the important work this body is undertaking to safeguard and preserve our diverse world heritage.
Given the urgent challenges we face, the member states of UNESCO must focus on core priorities, such as preserving cultural and natural heritage, and in doing so, respect the interests and histories of all people. These politicized decisions do not further the mandate and standing of UNESCO. Worse, we believe actions such as this hinder and obstruct progress in the region.
UNESCO is engaged in activities around the world that are critical to the preservation of our world heritage. And yet, so many in the international community are unaware of these efforts, which are overshadowed by reports of biased politicization in the Organization. These resolutions undermine support for the Organization, and indeed its very legitimacy.