Buenos Aires Herald: Simon Wiesenthal Rejects Argentina's UNESCO

Buenos Aires Herald

Tuesday, November 1, 2011   | Imprimir

01/11/2011 |  Palestine permanent member

Simon Wiesenthal rejects Argentina’s UNESCO vote

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre yesterday expressed its concern over Argentina’s vote during the UNESCO General Conference, also held yesterday, where Palestine was recognized as a Member State.

“The Palestinian state today (yesterday) took one step further in its avoidance of diplomacy: after going to the UN Security Council in New York to avoid negotiations with Israel, (Palestine) has now achieved UNESCO membership in Paris to elude rejection in New York,” said Dr Shimon Samuels, International Relations Director for the Wiesenthal Centre and Head of its UNESCO delegation.

“This is a reward for rejecting direct negotiation. There is no incentive for the Palestinians in accepting dialogue, and the opposite, eluding negotiations with Israel, is rewarded,” said Sergio Widder, the Centre’s Latin America Director.

The Centre, which released a press statement yesterday, claimed that the Palestinians aimed to “appropriate the identity” of other civilizations by claiming their own heritage over places of religious significance to Christians and Jews.

“The recent profanation of the Tomb of Joseph, covered in swastikas, shows that the Palestinians are either not ready or do not want to offer adequate protection for these sites. We hope that Argentina and the other Latin American and Caribbean nations that voted in favour of Palestine’s incorporation instruct their delegates to proceed in the spirit of the promotion of bilateral dialogue rather than boycott direct negotiations,” said the statement.

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