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UNESCO set to vote on anti-Israeli resolution

Palestinian worshipers are seen near the Dome of the Rock shrine at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, in the Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds, before Friday prayers, April 21, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is set to vote on a resolution that describes Israel as an “occupying power,” denying its sovereignty claims over all of Jerusalem al-Quds.

The UN heritage body will on Tuesday vote on the resolution, which describes as null and void any decision by the Israeli “occupying power,” its parliament, its supreme court, or any other Israeli authority that pertains to Jerusalem al-Quds.

The resolution has reportedly been drafted with the help of Germany, which also led efforts for the vote’s timing.

The measure also slams Israel’s excavations in East Jerusalem al-Quds and the Old City.

The motion is expected to be approved despite Israel’s intense attempts to exert pressure on members of the UN body to vote against it.

The resolution has drawn Tel Aviv’s ire. The regime’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely expressed such anger at the resolution and its timing — which coincides with the creation of the Israeli regime — on Monday.

“Tomorrow, even as we celebrate, UNESCO will be voting against Israel’s right to sovereignty in its capital city, Jerusalem. This is absurd. We have become used to the concept of ‘fake news.’ Well, welcome to ‘fake history,’” she claimed in bizarre remarks.

Israeli sources say Italy is the only country that has decided not to support the resolution.

Last year, the UNESCO approved a motion that endorses the right of the Palestinians to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound and slams Israeli provocations around the holy site.

The occupied territories have witnessed new tensions ever since Israeli forces imposed restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds in August 2015.

More than 300 Palestinians have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces in the tensions since the beginning of October 2015. A number of Israelis have been killed, too.

The Tel Aviv regime has tried to change the demographic makeup of Jerusalem al-Quds over the past decades by constructing settlements, destroying historical sites, and expelling the local Palestinian population.

Palestinians say the Israeli measures are aimed at paving the way for the Judaization of the city.

In December 2016, the UN Security Council adopted a historic resolution that condemns Israeli settlement activities as a “flagrant violation of international law.”

Approved 14-0 in the 15-member Council, Resolution 2334 (2016) calls on Israel to immediately and completely cease all settlement activities on occupied Palestinian territory, including the West Bank.

The United States — Israel’s staunchest ally — uncharacteristically decided not to wield its veto power and to allow the adoption of the text with a mere abstention.

The Tel Aviv regime had lobbied extensively to prevent the ratification of that resolution, too.

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