Committee Decisions

36 COM 7A.23.II

Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (site proposed by Jordan) (C 148 rev) – The Mughrabi Ascent

1.   Having examined Document WHC-12/36.COM/7A.Add,

2.   Recalling previous UNESCO decisions, including 176 EX/Special Plenary Meeting/Decision, Decision 34 COM 7A.20 of the World Heritage Committee adopted at its 34th session (Brasilia, 2010), and 187 EX/Decision 5 relating to the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem,

3.   Also recalling the relevant provisions on the protection of cultural heritage, including in the four Geneva Conventions (1949), the relevant provisions of the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict of 1954, the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 1972, the inscription of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls at the request of Jordan on the World Heritage List (1981) and on the List of World Heritage in Danger (1982), and recommendations, resolutions and decisions of UNESCO,

4.   Reaffirming the purpose and spirit of the professional encounter at the technical level on 13 January 2008, as well as the follow-up meeting on 24 February 2008,

5.   Noting the Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth and its Addendum, Tenth and Eleventh  Reinforced Monitoring Reports prepared by the World Heritage Centre,

6.   Recognizes the concerns raised in this regard about the decision by the Jerusalem District Planning and Construction Commission on the town planning scheme for the Mughrabi Ascent, and the  subsequent decision by Israel’s National Council for Planning and Construction to adopt “an alternative plan for the Mughrabi Ascent”, approved on 31 October 2010 by the above-mentioned Commission;

7.   Requests that, despite the decisions mentioned in paragraph 6, the process for the design of the Mughrabi Ascent be inclusive of all parties concerned, in accordance with obligations and duties of such parties as stipulated in the content of previous World Heritage Committee decisions;

8.   Reaffirms in this regard, that no measures, unilateral or otherwise, should be taken which will affect the authenticity and integrity of the site, in accordance with the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 1972 and the relevant provisions on the protection of cultural heritage of the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict of 1954;

9.   Notes the request made by the World Heritage Committee in previous decisions, and requests, in this regard, the Israeli authorities to continuecooperation with all concerned parties, in particular with Jordanian and Waqf experts;

10.  Acknowledges receipt of the Jordanian design for the restoration and preservation of the Mughrabi Ascent, submitted to the World Heritage Centre on 27 May 2011, and thanks Jordan for its cooperation in accordance with the relevant provisions of UNESCO conventions for the protection of cultural heritage;

11.  Affirms in this regard, that the UNESCO-initiated process for follow-up to the design of the Mughrabi Ascent, which aims at proactively facilitating an accepted and monitored solution concerning the Mughrabi Ascent among all parties concerned, be coordinated with all such parties, in accordance with the spirit and content of previous World Heritage Committee decisions;

12.  Acknowledges in this regard, the concerns raised regarding Israel’s submission and content of its plan for the Mughrabi Ascent, referred to in paragraph 6, and requests the World Heritage Centre to be proactive and follow closely, in the context of the Reinforced monitoring mechanism, the developments associated with this process;

13.  Notes with satisfaction the access provided by Israel to the Mughrabi Ascent for Jordanian and Waqf experts on 23 May, 8 August and 28 November 2010, and reiterates its request that Israel continues cooperation commenced with all parties concerned, in particular with Jordanian and Waqf experts to enable agreement on, and implementation of, a final design for the restoration and preservation of the Mughrabi Ascent among all parties concerned;

14.  Also notes in this regard, reports of preliminary discussions between Jordan and Israel concerning the Mughrabi Ascent, which stipulate, inter alia, that no measures, unilateral or otherwise, shall be taken on the site in accordance with paragraph 8 above, and the necessity of an accepted design and implementation thereof among all parties concerned;and reiterates in this regard, the need for the parties concerned to coordinate and cooperate on all related aspects of this issue;

15.  Encourages the Director-General to facilitate coordinated action and professional exchanges between all the parties concerned;

16.  Decides to continue applying the Reinforced monitoring mechanism for the state of conservation of the Mughrabi Ascent, and also requests a report from the World Heritage Centre every four months, until the 37th session of the World Heritage Committee in 2013. 

Themes: Conservation, Communication, Reinforced Monitoring
Session: 36COM