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World
 

Unesco names ancient West Bank terraces endangered heritage

Published on Jun 20, 2014 11:32 PM
 
Israeli soldiers arrest a young Palestinian boy following clashes in the center of the West Bank town of Hebron, on June 20, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

DOHA (AFP) - UN cultural agency Unesco on Friday granted endangered World Heritage status to ancient terraces in the West Bank that are under threat from the Israeli separation barrier.

After an emergency nomination by Palestinian officials, Unesco's annual World Heritage Committee gathering in Doha voted to grant the protected status to the agricultural community of Battir, which straddles the Green Line just south of Jerusalem and where Israel plans to erect part of the barrier.

The granting of the status is likely to boost the efforts of local residents locked in a high-profile court battle to change the route of the barrier.

"The site is inscribed, congratulations to Palestine," committee chairwoman Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani said after the resolution was narrowly approved, against the recommendations of Unesco experts.

 
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