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White House, Congress slam UNESCO resolution denying Jewish ties to Jerusalem

Posted by Tip Staff - October 14, 2016


UNESCO, the United Nations’ cultural agency, approved a resolution on Thursday that denied Jewish and Christian historical ties to Jerusalem, a move that was harshly criticized by the White House as well as Israeli leaders from across the political spectrum.
“One-sided, unhelpful resolutions have been a recurring challenge at UNESCO in recent years, and the United States has strongly opposed these resolutions at the UNESCO Executive Board,” a senior Obama administration official told The Jerusalem Post. “We will not hesitate to use our vote at the current Board meeting to oppose these resolutions.” The resolution, according to the official, was part of a pattern of “recurring highly politicized use of the UNESCO Executive Board meetings.”
A bipartisan letter signed by 39 members of Congress criticized the resolution for “attempting to erase the Jewish and Christian connection to this sacred city” which would “further damage the prospects of peace between Israel and the Palestinians.”
“This resolution, while claiming to maintain the administrative status quo, in fact changes it” by making the conflict religious, former foreign minister Tzipi Livni wrote in a public letter to UNESCO director-general Irina Bokova. “I sincerely feel that this resolution brings us no closer to a just and agreed-upon solution. We can argue and critique policies, but when it comes to the historical facts connecting the Jewish People to these holy sites, there can be no politics.”


Islamist militants belonging to ISIS’ Sinai branch attacked an Egyptian army checkpoint in northern Sinai on Friday, killing 12 Egyptian soldiers and wounding six others. Fifteen terrorists were also killed in the exchange of gunfire. The militants approached the checkpoint in sport-utility vehicles and opened fire with light arms and heavy machine guns. The attacked checkpoint was some 25 miles from the town of Bir al-Abd, and marks the first time that ISIS has successfully carried out an operation in central Sinai. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said that the attack would make Egypt even more determined in its “battle for building and survival.”
Egypt has previously expressed its anger that ISIS and Hamas have collaborated across the Gaza-Sinai border. Avi Issacharoff of The Times of Israel reported in August that their “cooperation has seen injured IS fighters routinely brought into the Strip for treatment, alongside ongoing weapons smuggling over the border.” Furthermore, he continued, “Egyptian sources say they were likely smuggled into Gaza via tunnels...that facilitate the connection between the two Islamist terror groups.”
Hamas provides “tens of thousands” of dollars per month to ISIS in Sinai—money deliberately earmarked for securing weapons shipments. Hamas trains ISIS fighters in planting deadly IEDs and firing lethal anti-tank missiles, and has smuggled weaponry across the border into Sinai. Top level officials from both organizations cross borders to coordinate their activities. Hamas terrorists have joined ISIS in Sinai and at least one senior Hamas official has been killed fighting alongside ISIS. In another dispatch in July, Issacharoff classified the relationship between Hamas and ISIS’s Sinai Province as one of “close cooperation.” Hamas has also launched drones to spy on Egyptian troop movements in Sinai along the Gaza border, part of an effort to “keep smuggling routes open between Sinai and Gaza. These routes are vital to Hamas on one side of the border, and Islamic State on the other.”


Three men linked to the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah were accused of laundering drug money on behalf of the Colombian cartel after authorities said they illegally moved $500,000 into Miami banks, the Miami Herald reported Tuesday.
The apparent ringleader of the money laundering scheme, 31-year-old Mohammad Ahmad Ammar from Medellin, Colombia, “was quietly booked into a Miami-Dade jail last week to face state felony money laundering charges,” the Herald wrote. Ammar’s arrest “underscores increased law-enforcement scrutiny on the role of Middle Eastern terror groups who use financial networks in Latin America to earn untold millions off drug profits,” the paper added.
In a 500-page indictment in 2013, the late Argentinian prosecutor Alberto Nisman outlined Iran’s terror network in South America, including Hezbollah’s involvement with drug traffickers. Iran—Hezbollah’s sponsor to the tune of up to $200 million per yearremains the world’s greatest money laundering risk.

Rony Malka, director of law enforcement for the Israel Nature and Parks Authority (INPA) and head of its Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) Management Authority, received a 2016 Clark R. Bavin Wildlife Law Enforcement Award at the 17th Conference of the Parties of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora in Johannesburg, South Africa. He was recognized for numerous accomplishments during his 40-year career to protect wildlife and improve wildlife law enforcement efforts in Israel. Twelve wildlife law-enforcement champions from nine countries were presented with the award on October 3 by the Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) based in Washington, DC. Since 1997, 96 individuals and/or agencies from 30 countries have received the Clark R. Bavin Wildlife Law Enforcement Award, named after the late chief of the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s Office of Law Enforcement. (via Israel21c)

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