Palestine’s Ambassador to UNESCO, Mounir Anastas, has won the election for the post of Rapporteur for the organisation’s Cultural Committee, Quds Press has reported. The result was announced on Thursday.
An Italian official has been elected as President of the Committee, with representatives of Venezuela, Albania, the Philippines and Zambia taking positions as members.
During its meeting, the Committee agreed unanimously, without the need for a vote, on a resolution to maintain the cultural heritage of Jerusalem’s Old City. The resolution called for an interactive monitoring delegation to be sent to the Old City in order to evaluate the situation and carry out a work plan and prepare advice on the measures needed to be taken in cooperation with all interested parties.
Members of the committee expressed their concern about official procrastination over the implementation of UNESCO’s executive council decisions regarding Jerusalem’s Old City, which is still under Israeli occupation.
In October 2017, UNESCO’s largest donor, the US, confirmed that it would be withdrawing, explicitly citing the reason as UNESCO’s anti-Israel resolutions. It will instead establish an observer mission at the Paris-based organisation to replace its representation.