Palestinian calls for UNESCO intervention 19Mar11 March 21, 2011

Press TV -  19 March 2011

Palestinian activists have called on UNESCO to prevent Israel from building a settlement on an ancient Palestinian village called Lifta.

The activists said on Friday that the village — known for its vibrant, creative, and artistic people and located just one kilometer northwest of al-Quds (Jerusalem) — must be preserved for its important world heritage and cultural value, a Press TV correspondent reported from Lifta.

In 1948, some 2,500 Palestinians were forced out of their village following the attack of Jewish groups who were trying to take control of the Jerusalem-Yaffa road, the report added.

Most Palestinian residents of the village moved to al-Quds to escape the fighting. As the village was almost depopulated, Israeli settlers occupied the homes of the Palestinians.

In their opposition to settlement construction and in an effort to reclaim their land, Palestinians along with international supporters, gathered here on Friday to say that the occupation will not go unchallenged.

The activists said that Israel should not be allowed to continue justifying its annexation practices and denial of Palestinian rights in order to build luxury apartments exclusively for the settlers.

In a remarkable move, Palestinians have filed a number of petitions, including one with the office of the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization — UNESCO — in Paris and called on the organization to designate the site as a genuine Palestinian Heritage site.

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