Sunday, March 21, 2010

Iraqi intellectuals to inspect state of Ezekiel's tomb

A group of prominent Iraqi intellectuals including academics from the local university of Al-Kufa have announced their intention to visit the Prophet Ezekiel's Tomb.

They will be inspecting the reconstruction of Ezekiel's Tomb and will film it. They regard the shrine as a World Heritage site to be protected and saved.

The visit follows reports that workmen renovating the shrine had painted over ancient Hebrew inscriptions around the tomb, causing irrevocable damage to its Jewish character. When Iraq had a Jewish community, thousands used to visit the shrine, especially at the festivals of Shavuot and Rosh Hashana.

In the face of an international outcry, the Iraqi authorities promised to transfer control of the renovations to 'specialised international authorities', presumably UNESCO.

As occurred at the nearby site of Babylon, it is feared that changes to Ezekiel's shrine may be too extensive for the site to be declared a World Heritage site.

For background information on the battle for Ezekiel's tomb see under 'Holy sites' label.


Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

I doubt that the site will be transferred to UNESCO supervision. But even if it were, UNESCO cannot be trusted either. After all, UNESCO is politically selective about the sites that it recognizes.

And as Abba Eban said many years ago, if the Arabs declared the world flat, the UN majority would go along.

Stuart said...

Hi, May I cross-post this one?

bataween said...

Yes, no problem

Stuart said...

Thank you.

Empress Trudy said...

UNESCO is the organization that wanted to burn Jewish books.