'MIFTAH' Participates in the UN International Conference on Jerusalem
July 13, 2019

Ramallah- the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy “MIFTAH”, represented by Tamara Tamimi, participated in the international conference “Preserving the Cultural and Religious Character of Jerusalem.” The conference was organized by the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People in Geneva on 27 and 28 June.

The conference covered a wide range of areas pertaining to Jerusalem and preservation of cultural heritage and religious character. This took place through four plenary sessions that focused on the legal status of Jerusalem and as a final status issue, challenges to the preservation of cultural heritage in Jerusalem, Jerusalem as a holy city to the three monotheistic religions, and way forward to safeguard the character of the city.

Within this framework, the issues of settlement expansion, discriminatory taxation systems, obstacles to building, renovation, targeting of religious sites and other factors impacting Palestinian cultural heritage in Jerusalem, were covered. Additionally, “MIFTAH” developed and submitted a position paper to the Committee on Israeli policies pertaining to the appropriation of Palestinian cultural heritage in Jerusalem. MIFTAH’s participation comes within the framework of the “Palestinian Narrative and Political Dialogue” program, and is in line with its strategic priorities to highlight human rights and humanitarian law violations perpetrated by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinian people and foremost those that take place in Jerusalem.

Tamara Tamimi confirmed the importance of the continuous participation of the Palestinian civil society in such activities, in light of its contribution to create the necessary diplomatic and political climate to facilitate access to justice of the Palestinian people, as well as continue to shed light on the violations perpetrated by Israeli authorities against Palestinian civilians.

The UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People was created in 1975 through UN General Assembly Resolution 3376, and was asked to develop an implementation program to enable the Palestinian people to exercise their inalienable rights of self-determination without external interference, national independence and sovereignty, and return of Palestinian refugees to their homeland. The General Assembly annually renews the mandate of the Committee, while the committee, with the support of the Palestinian Rights Division, organizes meetings and international conferences, and cooperates and communicates with civil society organizations worldwide, develops a media program, a publications program, and holds a special meeting to celebrate International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People on an annual basis on or around 29 November.