PRESS RELEASE Hispanic Evangelicals Condemn UNESCO’s Resolution Regarding Rachael’s Tomb and the Cave of the Patriarchs as Islamic Sites
The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC) and Hispanic Israel Leadership Coalition (HILC) condemn the UNESCO Approval of the Resolution passed on Wednesday declaring two biblical Jewish sites, Rachel’s Tomb near Bethlehem and the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, as Islamic holy sites, which attempts to strip Israel’s biblical, historical and cultural ties to these sites.
An earlier draft of the resolution, sponsored by six member nations of UNESCO’s executive board Algeria, Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates—included the Western Wall, calling it an extension of the al-Aksa Mosque and therefore a Muslim holy site as well. The revised version dropped
that claim. The resolution also falsely accused Israel of “aggression and illegal measures” on the Temple Mount that affect Muslim’s freedom of worship and access to the al-Aksa Mosque.
This UNESCO Resolution is an affront not only to Jews but also to Christians around the world and will lead to an increase in violence in Jerusalem. For Bible-believing Christians, the idea that these biblical sites somehow morphed into Islamic sites is ludicrous. Abraham purchased the cave and the field next to it
some 3,700 years ago as a family burial site (see Genesis 23-25), with the exception of Jacob’s second wife, Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, who was buried near Bethlehem (see Genesis 35:16-20).
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference NHCLC states “UNESCO’s resolution amounts to a disinformation campaign that will embolden global anti-Semitism.” Pastor Mario Bramnick President of HILC states “The Islamic Waqf have systematically destroyed and removed archaeological debris from the Temple Mount in an attempt to destroy Judeo-Christian biblical history and UNESCO is giving their stamp of approval.” Reverend Rodriguez further states that “this resolution undermines the Judeo Christian biblical traditions for over thousands of years and is of great concern to Christians throughout the world.”
“I think it’s time to tell the truth about Palestinian terrorism,” Netanyahu said in his initial remarks to the U.N. chief. “It is not about the settlements; it is not about the peace process. It is about the desire to destroy the State of Israel, pure and simple.”
Abbas, Netanyahu stated, has joined the ranks of ISIS and Hamas in propagating the lie that Israel is “threatening the Aksa Mosque. The international community should hold him accountable for incitement and support Israel’s right to self-defense, he said.
NHCLC/CONELA is the world’s largest Hispanic Christian organization. It serves as a representative voice for the more than 100 million Hispanic Evangelicals assembled in over 40,000 U.S. churches and another 500,000 congregations spread throughout the Spanish-speaking diaspora. For additional information, visit http://www.nhclc.org.
The Hispanic Israel Leadership Coalition is a subsidiary of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC/CONEL) is the largest International Latino Christian organization in America and in the world. The Hispanic Israel Leadership Coalition exists to engage, empower and equip the Latino born again evangelical community in full support of Israel and the Jewish community around the world.